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Fake Goods – Want a criminal record? – Know the Offences

Want a criminal record? – Know the Offences

If you are involved in selling, making, advertising, distributing fake goods which infringe a registered trade mark or breach copyright you are committing a criminal offence.

If you have not had the permission of a trade mark holder or copyright holder to use a mark, symbol or a piece of work, you commit an offence when you use it.

Where you stand to make a financial gain from selling fake goods and as a result cause a loss to the legitimate owner of the trade mark or work, you commit an offence.

The legislation:

Trade Marks Act 1994
Copyright, Designs & Patents Act 1988

All legislation can be found on www.legislation.gov.uk (external link)

Who’s keeping an eye on me? – Trading Standards & Other Anti-piracy Groups

Trading Standards respond to complaints from the public, businesses, police, anti-piracy groups, crimestoppers and more, following reports of individuals or traders involved in selling or producing fake goods.

We are not only responsive to tackling counterfeiting but we are also proactive and routinely work undercover on Car Boot Sales, in market places, and on the internet.

Where a business is innocently breaking the law or are unsure about what the law requires of them, we provide advice and guidance to them in the first place.

Blatant criminal activity is not accepted and we will take formal action against those who flaunt the law.

We work closely with anti-piracy organisations such as FACT, ELSPA, BPI and PRS for Music. We use their expertise to examine goods and produce evidence for court.

Wrexham Trading Standards have and will execute warrants with North Wales Police and raid your home, work or stall in the early hours of the morning and throughout the day once sufficient evidence has been obtained. This can be distressing for other family members through your actions.

If you choose to trade in counterfeit goods, or produce them at your home... Watch out we may be calling!

Is it worth it? – Penalties & Punishment

Every year Wrexham Trading Standards take people to court for selling and making counterfeit goods. A case is often heard at the Crown Court which hears more serious offences, and as such attracts a higher penalty should the defendant be found guilty.

Our successful cases have resulted in fines, community punishment, suspended sentences and imprisonment.

When people have been found guilty Trading Standards also apply for forfeiture of all infringing items which can include laptops, computers and printers which have been used to make e.g. DVDs, as well as the counterfeit items.

Further to this, confiscation orders can be made under the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) following conviction of a crime. This targets the criminal lifestyle of the defendant by seeking confiscation of their assets. This can even lead to the loss of your house. If payments to the Court are not met within a deadline they can then impose a prison sentence for non-payment.

For more information on POCA please visit Intellectual Property Office website (external link)

Disclaimer: Wrexham County Borough Council is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

Case Closed – Press Releases

Over the years Wrexham Trading Standards have had many successful results from prosecutions. Here are some of our results highlighting our work in this area: