Customs officers yesterday afternoon (May 30) smashed two syndicates which were active in selling counterfeit handbags of prestigious brand names to overseas tourists in Li Yuen Street East and Li Yuen Street West, Central.
They seized about 4,000 pieces of counterfeit handbags, valued about $0.5 million; and arrested three men and two women, aged between 48 and 53. They have been bailed out pending further investigations.
Customs investigations showed that the counterfeit handbags seized in an outlet at Li Yuen Street West looked highly alike genuine products and were sold at high prices. The syndicate claimed that the counterfeit goods were from legitimate sources in Paris.
For the syndicate operating at the hawker stall at Li Yuen Street East, it stored a small quantity of counterfeit handbags at a hidden corner as samples. Potential customers were directed to a showroom in a nearby building to complete the transaction.
A spokesman of the Customs and Excise Department today (May 31) urged members of the public not to patronise those illegitimate sellers or they would help foster counterfeiting activities.
To report counterfeiting activities, the public shall call Customs 24-hour hotline 2545 6182.
Ends/Tuesday, May 31, 2005