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U.S. Customs and Border Protection Import Specialists and Officers Seize Counterfeit Watches Valued at $28.7 Million

Release Date: 
July 9, 2012

Laredo, Texas - The Import Specialist Enforcement Team (ISET) at U.S. Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) Laredo Port of Entry recently seized a commercial shipment of counterfeit watches and other watches used to facilitate the importation carrying a combined retail value of $28.7 million.

Counterfeit watches seized by CBP officers in Laredo, TX.

In the enforcement action, a CBP import specialist at World Trade Bridge selected a shipment of watches for an enforcement examination. In the course of their examination, CBP officers and import specialists discovered possible infringement of the Louis Arden and Audemars Piguet design trademarks, which are trademark recorded with CBP. CBP subsequently on June 29 seized 10 boxes containing 1,120 watches found to be infringing on the Audemars Piguet design trademark as well as 28 boxes containing 3,080 watches determined to be used to facilitate the importation of the violative watches also were seized. The combined manufacturer's suggested retail price, had the Audemars Piguet trademark been genuine, was $28.7 million.

"This is one of the highest valued seizures in terms of MSRP in the history of the Port of Laredo," said Sidney Aki, CBP port director, Laredo Port of Entry. "Our ISET team has proven its excellence and its continued vigilance helps companies, especially those that register their trademarks with CBP, feel confident that their intellectual and property rights are protected."

CBP's vigilant enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights protects America's businesses against the threat of unfair and illicit competition from foreign companies and prevents goods that may be dangerous to consumers or national security from entering the United States.

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 keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017