U.S. Customs and Border Protection and China’s General Administration of Customs have jointly seized more than 243,000 counterfeit consumer electronics products as part of their month-long intellectual property rights enforcement operation.
The operation was the first of its kind between the two customs agencies, resulting from a commitment between CBP and GACC to cooperatively produce tangible IPR enforcement results by the Fifth Strategic & Economic Dialogue between the nations. Some of the products seized included popular trademarks such as Apple, Beats by Dr. Dre, Blackberry, Samsung, Sony and UL.
“The theft of intellectual property is a global problem and cross-border efforts are needed to fight it,” said Thomas S. Winkowski, CBP’s acting commissioner, in a written statement.
“The success of this joint operation fully proves that earnest and effective cooperation cross the border is needed to curb the movement of counterfeit products,” echoed Zou Zhiwu, vice minister of the GACC.
“Enforcement agencies around the world should work more closely to crack down these illegal activities.”
The operation also resulted in an arrest by local law enforcement in the New Orleans area of a U.S. citizen who repeatedly imported counterfeit Beats by Dr. Dre headphones, which he then sold on Craigslist. The arrest followed a GACC referral of information to CBP and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations, which coordinated with the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office in Louisiana on the arrest.