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Pittsburgh CBP Seizes $150k in Counterfeit Designer Brand Charms from Hong Kong

Release Date: 
April 6, 2020

PITTSBURGH – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) recently seized a shipment of 645 designer brand name charms in Pittsburgh that shipped from Hong Kong and was destined to an address in Pittsburgh. If authentic, the charms would have had a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $150,150.

Pittsburgh Customs and Border Protection officers seized 645 counterfeit designer brand name charms March 25, 2020, that, if authentic, would be valued at more than $150,000.
Some of the 433 counterfeit Chanel
charms that CBP officers seized.

CBP officers conducted random express delivery parcel examinations March 2 and opened a parcel manifested as phone cases and accessories. The parcel contained 433 Chanel Charms, 173 Louis Vuitton Charms, 10 Fendi Charms, eight Michael Kors Charms, six Dior Charms, five Chloe Charms, three Gucci Charms, three Hermes Charms, two Tiffany and Co. Charms, and two Chanel waist Chains,

Due to officer expertise and quality of packaging, officers detained the charms and worked with CBP’s Consumer Products and Mass Merchandising Centers for Excellence and Expertise, the agency’s trade experts, to confirm the charms to be counterfeit.

Officers seized the shipment March 25.

“Customs and Border Protection officers remain committed to protecting the intellectual property rights of businesses while protecting consumers against potentially harmful counterfeit products,” said Kathleen Killian Schafer, CBP’s Acting Port Director for the Port of Pittsburgh. “Consumers should be aware that counterfeit goods pose a health and safety threat and should protect their families by purchasing safe, authentic goods from reputable vendors.”

CBP officers seized a smaller shipment of counterfeit charms in January that also arrived in an express delivery shipment.

CBP protects businesses and consumers every day through an aggressive Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) enforcement program. Importation of counterfeit merchandise can cause significant revenue loss, damage the U.S. economy, and threaten the health and safety of the American people. On a typical day in 2019, CBP officers seized $4.3 million worth of products with Intellectual Property Rights violations. Learn more about what CBP did during "A Typical Day" in 2019.

Pittsburgh Customs and Border Protection officers seized 645 counterfeit designer brand name charms March 25, 2020, that, if authentic, would be valued at more than $150,000.
Counterfeit Michael Kors charms

CBP officers and Homeland Security Investigation (HSI) agents seized 27,599 shipments containing counterfeit goods in Fiscal Year (FY) 2019. The total estimated manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of the seized goods, had they been genuine, increased to over $1.5 billion from nearly $1.4 billion in FY 2018. 

Additionally, HSI arrested 256 individuals, obtained 197 indictments, and received 157 convictions related to intellectual property crimes during FY 2019.

The People’s Republic of China remained the primary source economy for seized counterfeit and pirated goods, accounting for a total estimated MSRP value of over $1 billion or 66 percent of the estimated MSRP value of all IPR seizures. 

CBP's border security mission is led at ports of entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations.  Please visit CBP Ports of Entry to learn more about how CBP’s Office of Field Operations secures our nation’s borders. Learn more about CBP at www.CBP.gov.

Follow the Director of CBP’s Baltimore Field Office on Twitter at @DFOBaltimore and on Instagram at @dfobaltimore for breaking news, current events, human-interest stories and photos.

Last modified: 
April 6, 2020