Part of the never-ending job for U.S. Customs and Boarder Protection (CBP) Agents and officials is to enforce laws directed at preventing the importing of fake and unauthorized products infringing on intellectual property rights such as trademarks, copyrights, and patents. Not only does such illegal trade threaten the property rights of domestic and international corporations, it can pose a serious danger to individuals’ health and safety.

counterfeit products

Savannah CBP Seizes Nearly $2 Million in Counterfeit Hermès Handbags per CBP

Here are recent examples of CBP seizures in Savannah in 2014 alone:
– April 17, 2014: $1M+ in Counterfeit Soccer Club Apparel (via China to Chamblee, GA)
– August 12, 2014: $1.6M+ in Counterfeit Sunglasses
– November 5, 2014: $1.8M+ in Counterfeit Hermès Handbags (via China to Atlanta)

High end consumer accessories continually lead the type of counterfeit products seized by estimated value. Here is a breakout from 2013 according to CBP:

counterfeit products

FY 2013 CBP Seizures by MSRP

Whereas clothing and electronics top the overall number of items seized:

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FY 2013 CBP Seizures by Item Quantity

According to the CBP, more than 11 million maritime containers arrive at U.S. seaports each year, along with another 10 million at land boarders by truck and 3 million by rail. Add in the air transportation arrivals for another 250 million more cargo, postal, and express consignment packages. Clearly it is a daunting task to even begin to identify and stop such illegal shipments, along with other forms of illegal cargo entering the U.S. in various manners.

Counterfeit goods pose a potentially serious safety threat to consumers and economic loss to U.S. businesses,” said Lisa Beth Brown, Area Port Director in Savannah, Georgia. “Enforcing Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) remains a top trade priority for U.S. Customs and Border Protection.”

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Priority Trade Issue: Intellectual Property Rights


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