STERLING, Va. – The holidays are coming. U.S. Customs and Border Protection warns travelers to not bring counterfeit consumer goods back from overseas trips after officers last week seized more than $77,000 worth of clothing bearing unauthorized designer brand logos at Washington Dulles International Airport.
CBP officers seized more than 100 pieces of clothing bearing 25 designer brand names on October 28, that if authentic, would have been valued at $77,034 MSRP.
This seizure started with a routine baggage examination on October 7, when CBP agriculture specialists inspected a traveler from Cameroon and discovered food products in his baggage. They also discovered what appeared to be counterfeit designer brand named clothing in his four checked bags.
CBP agriculture specialists notified CBP officers who inventoried the clothing, with brand names and logos from AWGE, Bottega, Eden Park, Gucci, Kappa, Palm, Angels, Prada, and Versace, and many others. Officers also discovered two pairs of shoes bearing Yeezy and Adidas brand names.
CBP officers detained the clothing and released the traveler.
CBP officers submitted photos and documentation to CBP’s Centers of Excellence and Expertise, which are the agency’s trade experts, who determined that the clothing were counterfeit.
CBP officers seized the counterfeit clothing.
CBP is withholding the traveler’s name because he has not been criminally charged. An investigation continues.
“We are approaching the holiday shopping season and Customs and Border Protection encourages travelers to exercise caveat emptor, or buyer beware, when considering purchasing counterfeit consumer goods overseas as gifts for family and friends,” said Kim Der-Yeghiayan, Acting Area Port Director for CBP’s Area Port of Washington, D.C. “Counterfeit and pirated goods are illegal and they pose a real health and safety threat to consumers, so we encourage consumers to buy authentic products from reputable vendors.”
CBP protects businesses and consumers every day through an aggressive Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) enforcement program.
During fiscal year 2021, CBP and Homeland Security Investigation (HSI) seized over 27,000 shipments containing goods that violated intellectual property rights. The total estimated manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of the seized goods, had they been genuine, was $3.3 billion, or an average of about $9 million every day.
Moreover, HSI special agents arrested 388 individuals during 2021, obtained 155 indictments, and received 100 convictions related to intellectual property crimes.
News media can mine additional details on intellectual property enforcement at CBP’s annual counterfeit goods seizure reports.
Brand owners can partner with CBP by applying to record their federally registered trademarks and copyrights through the e-Recordation program: https://iprr.cbp.gov/s/.
CBP encourages all travelers to learn rules governing what they can and cannot bring to the United States at CBP’s Know Before You Go webpage.
CBP’s border security mission is led at ports of entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations. CBP officers screen international travelers and cargo and search for illicit narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, counterfeit consumer goods, prohibited agriculture, and other illicit products that could potentially harm the American public, U.S. businesses, and our nation’s safety and economic vitality. Learn what CBP accomplished during “A Typical Day” in 2021.
Follow the Director of CBP’s Baltimore Field Office on Twitter at @DFOBaltimore for breaking news, current events, human interest stories and photos, and CBP’s Office of Field Operations on Instagram at @cbpfieldops.