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Fake Watches Worth Nearly $2 Million Seized by Cincinnati CBP

Release Date: 
August 12, 2020

CINCINNATI—Over the past two weeks, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers in Cincinnati seized 54 counterfeit watches from two shipments at a local express consignment facility. The watches, which came from China, would have been worth a total of $1.9 million had they been genuine.Watches

The counterfeit watches were labeled as Audemars Piguet, Rolex, Cartier, and Gucci, but the shipments were manifested as “timers” and “watch,” with listed values of $33 and $200. The packages were addressed to individuals in Jersey City, New Jersey and Mobile, Alabama.

Intellectual property rights (IPR) protection is a priority trade issue for CBP. In Fiscal Year (FY) 2019, CBP and their partner agency Homeland Security Investigation (HSI) seized 27,599 shipments containing IPR violations with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of over $1.5 billion had the goods been genuine. Watches and jewelry represent 15 percent of all IPR seizures, and continue to top the list of all seized IPR materials.

“Legitimate cross-border trade powers the U.S. economy,” said Cincinnati Port Director Richard Gillespie. “As trade grows at unprecedented rates, our officers are working hard to identify threats and shut down illicit suppliers.”

CBP has established an educational initiative to raise consumer awareness about the consequences and dangers that are often associated with the purchase of counterfeit and pirated goods. Information about the Truth Behind Counterfeits public awareness campaign can be found at https://www.cbp.gov/FakeGoodsRealDangers.

CBP conducts operations at ports of entry throughout the United States, and regularly screens arriving international passengers and cargo for narcotics, weapons, and other restricted or prohibited products. CBP strives to serve as the premier law enforcement agency enhancing the Nation’s safety, security, and prosperity through collaboration, innovation, and integration.

Last modified: 
February 3, 2021