Gloucestershire Trading Standards Service has been carrying out enforcement activity following reports of counterfeit clothing being sold at markets and through social media sites in Gloucester.
Officers seized counterfeit items of clothing, including Burberry and Adidas children’s clothing, from a Gloucester car boot sale this week. The counterfeits had an estimated value of £300. The market organisers have been informed that further visits will be carried out and Trading Standards will be taking action against anyone found selling them.
Officers also carried out two entry warrants to residential properties on Friday 14 December following complaints of sales of counterfeit clothes and footwear. The properties in Gloucester were searched and evidence was seized linking the suspect to sales via social media sites. The investigations are ongoing.
Cllr Dave Norman, cabinet member for trading standards, said: “A 2017 report found that in the UK, almost 4% of all imports in 2013 were counterfeit, worth £9.3 billion. The trade in counterfeits costs the UK 60,000 jobs every year as well as almost £4 billion in lost tax revenue.
However, the selling of counterfeit clothing isn’t just bad for businesses. It can also be dangerous for customers as counterfeit clothing does not get tested against safety regulations, so giving these to a child could put them in real danger.
It is really important that customers are fully aware of the dangers of buying these goods.”
Andy Hermiston, Head of Trading Standards, added: “It is important to ensure legitimate traders are protected and those who feel they can make easy money are deterred at the earliest stage.
“Officers work hard to ensure there is an even playing field for businesses and develop intelligence so that the illegal sellers are identified and dealt with in an appropriate manner.
“People should be aware that selling fakes may not only lead to prosecution but all the offences are subject to the Proceeds of Crime Act so any profits can be confiscated.”
Offenders selling counterfeit goods can face prison terms of up to ten years and also an unlimited fine.
Anyone wishing to report the sale of counterfeit goods can do so by calling 03454 040506.