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.
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.
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:
- October 2009 at Mold Crown Court 2 Wolverhampton men received 100 hours community punishment each, and 12 weeks imprisonment suspended for 2 years for selling counterfeit clothing at Chirk Car Boot Sale. Case referred for Proceeds of Crime Investigation resulting in confiscation order in excess of £50,000.
- July 2009 at Mold Crown Court. Wrexham man jailed for 9 months for sale and possession of counterfeit clothing in the People’s Market, Wrexham. Case referred for Proceeds of Crime Investigation.
- November 2008 at Mold Crown Court. Stockport man jailed for 6 months for sale and possession of counterfeit clothing at Chirk Car Boot Sale. Case referred for Proceeds of Crime Investigation resulting in confiscation order in excess of £50,000.
- November 2008 at Wrexham Magistrates Court. 3 months curfew order imposed on Wrexham man for selling counterfeit DVDs in a public house.
- October 2008 at Mold Crown Court. Wrexham man received a 20 week prison sentence, suspended for two years and placed on supervision for 2 years. Also made subject of a 3 month curfew. Case referred for Proceeds of Crime Investigation resulting in confiscation order in excess of £3,000.
- June 2007 at Mold Crown Court. Wrexham man received 6 months imprisonment, suspended for 2 years, and sentenced to 200 hours community service for sale and possession of counterfeit CDs and MP3s. The case was referred for Proceeds of Crime Investigation resulting in confiscation order of £20,000.
- December 2006 at Birmingham Crown Court. Wrexham man jailed for 12 months for involvement in conspiracy to supply counterfeit DVDs via the internet.