A visit by Walsall Trading Standards Officers resulted in a large haul of counterfeit goods at Bescot market recently.
The sizable seizure from four stalls during a visit on Sunday 15 November by Trading Standards working in conjunction with Bescot Promotions and Walsall Football Club was part of an ongoing programme designed to eradicate counterfeit goods from being sold on the market and follows advice visits to the stall holders.
Councillor Adrian Andrew Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Economy, Infrastructure and Development said:"We take the threat that these counterfeits pose to the local economy of Walsall very seriously as they do people out of their money. These goods are cheaper for a reason and potentially are dangerous! All of these items will be destroyed and their ability to undermine legitimate business will be removed. Those people who sell fake goods like these are committing a criminal act and are jeopardising jobs."
National support for the hugely successful initiative which netted the equivalent of a 20 foot container full of fake goods came from the Anti-Counterfeiting Group (ACG) and the National Markets Group (NMG).
Graham Mogg, Anti-Counterfeiting Group's Intelligence Co-ordinator and chair of the National Markets Group said:"The availability of counterfeit goods at Markets, as evidenced in this action, seriously undermines legitimate businesses and in turn impacts on the UK's ability to grow the economy through creativity and innovation. A multi-agency approach as shown at Bescot Market, bringing together Trading Standards and brand representatives, is the only way that we can effectively undermine this criminal activity.
"We are extremely grateful for the time, effort and professional approach by Walsall Trading Standards. We will continue to work with them and the market operator to reduce the availability of counterfeit and pirated goods at the market.''
Minister for Intellectual Property, Baroness Neville-Rolfe, said: "From pirate websites to fake electrical appliances and counterfeit vodka, intellectual property (IP) crime hurts consumers as well as businesses, and costs the UK economy hundreds of millions of pounds each year. That's why the Government is committed to cracking down on individuals and criminal gangs responsible for large scale IP crime."The successful operation in Walsall demonstrates the important role that partner organisations of the National Market Group play in protecting IP. This action should serve as a warning that this type of criminal activity will be firmly dealt with."