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Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Fake goods worth £4 million stopped at Heathrow

  • Published: Monday, 13 September 2010

Fake smart phones found at Heathrow

Counterfeit goods worth almost £4 million have been seized at Heathrow Airport in the last three months. If you have information about smugglers or people trading in fake goods, find out how you can report them.

Fake goods: jewellery, smart phones, pills

Concerned about smuggling or fake goods?

Please make a report on 0800 595 000

UK Border Agency officers based at Heathrow have had a busy summer, seizing goods valued at almost £4 million over the past three months. Among significant finds were:

  • 2,500 pieces of counterfeit designer jewellery
  • 1,300 fake smart phones
  • 50 bogus iPads

Officers also uncovered batches of clothes labels destined to be stitched on to fake products, and thousands of unlicensed counterfeit Viagra pills. 

If you have information about fake goods from abroad, you should call 0800 595 000 (the HM Revenue & Customs customs hotline). Calls from UK landlines are free. You will not need to give your name or personal details when you call. If you prefer to send an email, the address is:

Protecting British consumers

Danger of fake goods

Unscrupulous importers put consumers at risk from potentially dangerous, unregulated products. The UK Border Agency operates at ports, airports and mail sorting centres to stop counterfeit goods from entering the UK market. Its officers recently stopped over 180,000 counterfeit Viagra tablets containing unknown and possibly harmful chemicals from hitting the UK black market.

Grant Miller, Assistant Director of the agency at Heathrow, said: "We have to stop the trade in counterfeit goods to protect the public purse and protect consumers from potentially dangerous goods. We've seen cases of electrical goods literally blowing up in people’s hands."

Private prosecutions

When suspected counterfeit goods are held by the UK Border Agency, officers approach the companies who hold the rights, to verify that the products are fake. Companies then decide whether or not to bring a private prosecution against the importer. The goods are also destroyed.

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