Feds seize counterfeit goods in multiple Pa. raids
WEST PHILADELPHIA - February 7, 2013 (WPVI) -- Federal agents left a West Philadelphia location with a truckload of contraband Thursday.
There were dozens and dozens of boxes full of fake sneakers and other goods.
It was all found inside a storefront at 49th and Lancaster.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents fanned out across the city and the suburbs, raiding storefronts apparently operated by the same man.
One on Main Street in Darby, Pa. had a sign on the door with the name "Sneaker Kings".
It lists four locations and advertises itself as the home of the $6 and $15 sneakers.
Agents hauled out dozens of boxes of counterfeit sneakers and shoes. They look like the real deal from manufacturers like Nike and Reebok, at a fraction of the cost.
At another location, 60th and Media in Southwest Philadelphia, the sign outside advertises sneakers for $5.
That's a dirt-cheap price for designer brands that are actually fakes. Inside, there were more boxes full of bogus goods.
Police also raided another location on the 5500 block of Lindbergh Boulevard. The shops appear to have popped up overnight in rundown storefronts in poor neighborhoods.
The store at 49th and Lancaster was also selling bootleg videos and designer handbags.
The fake products cost the real manufacturers millions of dollars a year, and also damage reputations because of shoddy workmanship.
Sources say most of the counterfeit sneakers confiscated in today's multiple raids come from Southeast Asia and China.
At this point, the government is releasing no information about these raids because it's an ongoing investigation.
Action News has learned that similar raids were also conducted Thursday in the York, Pennsylvania area. No word yet on who, if anybody, has been arrested.
Thursday afternoon, I reached by telephone the operator of several of the raided storefronts, including the one at 49th and Lancaster.
I asked him if he was running a legitimate business. He answered, "If it was legitimate, they wouldn't be raiding them."
pennsylvania, counterfeiting, local/state
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