Arrests, seizures after Hong Kong toy retailers raided

Customs officers seized 4700 toys in a series of raids on Hong Kong toy retailers last week.

The raids were the result of an operation aimed at combating the sale of toys and stationery which infringed copyright.

Seven people were arrested and the seized goods had an estimated street value of about HK$270,000.

The enforcement action began earlier in the month when Customs officers conducted patrols in various districts and found that suspected infringing toys and stationery were being sold in retail shops and at fixed hawker pitches.

“After investigation, Customs officers conducted enforcement action,” said a spokesperson. “During the operation, a total of eight retail shops and fixed hawker pitches in Mong Kok and Sham Shui Po were raided and a total of about 4700 suspected infringing toys, stationery items and other products were seized.”

One man and six women aged from 35 to 68 were arrested, including two shop owners and five salespersons. They were all released on bail pending further investigation.

Customs has reminded retailers and market traders to be cautious and prudent in merchandising.

“Selling infringing goods is a serious crime and offenders will face criminal liability. Customs also appeals to consumers to procure items at reputable shops and to check with trademark owners or copyright owners or their authorised agents if the authenticity of a product is in doubt,” the spokesperson said.

Under the Trade Descriptions Ordinance, any person who sells or possesses for sale any goods with a forged trademark commits an offence. The maximum penalty upon conviction is a fine of $500,000 and imprisonment for five years.

Under the Copyright Ordinance, any person who sells or possesses for sale infringing items commits an offence. The maximum penalty upon conviction is a fine of $50,000 for each infringing copy and imprisonment for four years.

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