CHICAGO–U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officers at Chicago O'Hare International Mail Branch examined a parcel from South Korea that listed its contents as industrial masks on May 30.
The shipment was selected for exam due to x-ray inconsistencies. Inside the parcel were 24 boxes each containing 10 counterfeit 3M 8822 Plus masks. Import Specialists noted the poor packaging, low value, and poor quality, and sent the masks to a 3M Authenticator. The maks were deemed to be counterfeit, an Intellectual Property Rights violation. If the masks were real, the MSRP would have been $813.
The package arrived from South Korea was destined for a residence in Buffalo Grove. “Criminals are exploiting consumers during the ongoing pandemic for sheer greed” said Shane Campbell, Area Port Director, Chicago. “These counterfeit masks may not meet safety standards, which puts the public at risk, jeopardizing the health and well being of everyone. CBP officers are highly trained and work diligently to protect the people of the United States.”
Criminal organizations are attempting to exploit the limited supply of and increased demand for some pharmaceuticals, personal protective equipment and other medical goods required to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Among other products, these criminals are smuggling and selling counterfeit safety equipment, unapproved COVID-19 test kits, unproven medicines and substandard hygiene products through the online marketplace.
To combat these criminal activities, CBP is targeting imports and exports that may contain counterfeit or illicit goods. The products in targeted shipments often include false or misleading claims, lack required warnings or lack proper approvals.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between official ports of entry. CBP is charged with securing the borders of the United States while enforcing hundreds of laws and facilitating lawful trade and travel.