Haul of 'Fake' Designer Goods Unearthed in Market

More than 3,000 suspected fake designer goods seized

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More than 3,000 suspected fake designer goods were seized during a raid on a West London market.

Three people were arrested during the raid on the Western International Sunday Market on Sunday 26 July as part of Operation Genuwim, which saw police teaming up with Hounslow Council Trading Standards.

The raid followed weeks of planning and surveillance of the popular Sunday market where, on the day, three traders were identified as selling what appeared to be knock-off high-end clothes and accessories to shoppers.

Among the suspected fakes seized were clothing, belts, bags, sunglasses and jewellery sporting designer labels and the insignia of brands such as Abercrombie and Fitch, Polo Ralph Lauren, G-Star, Luis Vuitton, Mulberry and Gucci.

The Western International Sunday Market operates from the car park of the renowned daily fruit and veg market in Hayes Road, Southall but the two are unrelated.

Operation Genuwim involved five Trading Standards officers and a team of 11 police officers, who between them confiscated the haul of more than 3,000 suspected fakes. After the three men were arrested under the Trademarks Act 1994, two properties were searched in Southall where more goods and cash were seized.

Experts from the genuine brands have been drafted in to look over the cache of fakes and Trading Standards will push for the three men arrested to be prosecuted if their suspicions prove correct.

Richard Foote, Cabinet Member for Community Protection, Hounslow Council, said: “Fake goods may look like a bargain, but they are often found to be of substandard and in some cases, for example with electrical goods and cosmetics, they can be dangerous.

“Supplying and dealing in counterfeit goods is a serious offence. Not only do those caught risk losing their stock, assets, such as vehicles and their homes, but the maximum penalty for dealing in counterfeit goods is 10 years imprisonment or an unlimited fine.”
Police Sergeant John Hipkiss said: “Op Genuwim is another example of a professionally led Police operation in close partnership with Hounslow Trading Standards. The meticulous, hard work from all agencies involved, have led to these arrests and thousands of what we suspect to be counterfeit goods being seized.”

Anyone who suspects traders of selling counterfeit goods should call the Trading Standards team on 020 8583 5555. Calls can be treated as anonymous.

August 4, 2015