Italian police seize tons of knockoffs

Feb. 13, 2010 at 2:58 PM
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ROME, Feb. 13 (UPI) -- Police in Italy say they seized 551,000 tons of counterfeit goods, including high quality knockoffs, from eight sites outside Rome.

The BBC said Saturday among the seized counterfeit goods were clothes, leather goods, shoes and other items police suspect would eventually have been given Italian designer labels to increase their worth.

The knockoff items would likely have been sold in cities throughout Italy, police added.

No arrests were reported. Police suspect the contraband may have come from Asia.

The seizure of the counterfeit items from the eight industrial hangers marked the most recent counterfeit scam to be uncovered in Italy.

Counterfeit scams ranging from the use of fake bonds to the production of counterfeit olive oil items result in an average of $9.4 billion of counterfeit items being sold annually, Italy's national retailers association estimates.

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