JAMAICA, N.Y. — U. S. Customs and Border Protection officers and import specialists made a timely seizure of counterfeit Rolex watches at John F. Kennedy International Airport.
On June 15, CBP officers inspecting a shipment from Hong Kong discovered and seized 19 Rolex watches that would have been worth an estimated manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $285,000 had they been genuine. CBP officers referred all seizure information, including photographs, to CBP import specialists to verify the authenticity of the merchandise and to confirm possible trademark violations.
The Consumer Products and Mass Merchandise Center of Excellence and Expertise (CEE) determined the entire shipment of 19 Rolex watches was counterfeit. The shipment was seized, keeping these illicit goods off our streets and the proceeds of their sale out of the hands of the illicit traders.
“Every day CBP officers and import specialists protect the American public and its economy,” said Marty Raybon, Acting Director of CBP’s New York Field Office. “This most recent interception of counterfeit watches demonstrates the ongoing vigilance and commitment to our Agency’s mission by our CBP officers and import specialists.”
This seizure is under investigation by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
CBP protects businesses and consumers every day through an aggressive Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) enforcement program, and IPR enforcement is a CBP Priority Trade Issue. In Fiscal Year 2020, CBP personnel nationwide seized 26,503 shipments containing counterfeit goods that would have been worth nearly $1.3 billion had they been genuine.
The theft of intellectual property and the trade in substandard and often dangerous goods threaten America’s innovation economy and consumer health and safety. Further, they generate proceeds that fund criminal activities and organized crime.
Consumers can take simple steps to protect themselves and their families from counterfeit goods:
• Purchase goods directly from the trademark holder or from authorized retailers.
• When shopping online, read seller reviews and check for a working U.S. phone number and address that can be used to contact the seller.
• Review CBP’s E-Commerce Counterfeit Awareness Guide for Consumers.
• Remember that if the price of a product seems too good to be true, it probably is.
For more information about the risks associated with purchasing counterfeit goods, visit CBP’s Fake Goods, Real Dangers website and read CBP’s E-Commerce Awareness Guide. Additional tips for protecting your family from counterfeit goods are available at StopFakes.gov.
If you have any information regarding suspected fraud or illegal trade activity, please contact CBP through the e-Allegations Online Trade Violations Reporting System or by calling 1-800-BE-ALERT. IPR violations can also be reported to the National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center at https://www.iprcenter.gov/referral/ or by telephone at 1-866-IPR-2060.