Customs officers seize counterfeit cosmetics

Hong Kong Customs has seized more than 1300 items of suspected counterfeit cosmetics after raids on three sites this week.

In an anti-counterfeiting operation conducted with the assistance of the trademark owners, customs officers took enforcement action at four dispensaries, five medicine stores and a warehouse. The raids took place in Tsim Sha Tsui, Mong Kok and Sheung Shui.

The suspected counterfeit cosmetics and skin care products have an estimated market value of about $73,000 and included soothing gel, eyebrow pencils and face powder.

Eight men and five women were arrested, including seven shop owners and six salespersons, aged from 19 to 60. They have all been released on bail as investigations continue.

In a statement, Hong Kong Customs said it has been carrying out stringent enforcement against the sale of infringing goods and will continue to step up patrols and enforcement actions against infringing activities during the Christmas season.

“Customs reminds consumers to procure goods at reputable shops and to check with the trademark owners or their authorised agents if the authenticity of a product is in doubt.”

Retailers were warned to be cautious and prudent in merchandising since the sale of counterfeit goods is a serious crime and offenders are liable to criminal liability.

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.

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