South Africa News

Police seize counterfeit goods over R3 million, arrest Pakistani national

Police have seized counterfeit goods imitating well-known brands worth over R3 million and arrested one Pakistani national for bribery.

The National Counterfeit Goods Unit led an integrated take-down operation in Midrand on Thursday, 16 May, resulting in the seizure of fake luxury goods.

Police spokesperson Colonel Amanda van Wyk said the operation involved members of the National Counterfeit Goods Unit, Commercial Crimes Detectives, officials from the South African Revenue Services (SARS) and Brand Protectors among others.

Fake brands

Van Wyk said the team executed a search and seizure warrant, targeting shops within a local shopping centre in Midrand.

“Over 4 000 items imitating well-known brands were seized, including sports apparel, shoes, cellphones, cellphone accessories, Bluetooth speakers, and earphones. During the operation, a Pakistani national attempted to bribe the officials and was subsequently arrested.”

Counterfeit operations

Last week, the National Counterfeit Goods Unit in collaboration with Brand Protectors seized fake petroleum oil worth over R200 000 and arrested four Zimbabweans in Monavoni, a suburb on the outskirts of Centurion.

In February, police seized counterfeit goods to the value of R13 million in Johannesburg.

Officers also arrested five undocumented suspects during the integrated take-down operation in the Johannesburg CBD.

Van Wyk at the time said the operation resulted in the seizure of over 18 000 counterfeit items such as clothing apparel, shoes, bags, caps, and watches.

“During the operation, the team also dismantled a hidden manufacturing plant and storage facility where counterfeit goods were distributed to shops in and around JHB. At this location, police seized large quantities of counterfeit items including a computer hard drive, silk screening, and laser cutting machines.”

Fake goods

Van Wyk said the recent successes follow similar take-down operations led by the National Counterfeit Goods Unit over the past six months in different parts of the country.

Counterfeit or illicit products have been flooding South African shores and the fight against them seems far from over which has a detrimental impact on the economic growth of the country due to lost revenue.

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