INDIANAPOLIS — Customs officers in Indianapolis were able to keep $10.1 million worth of fake Rolex watches off the streets.
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said officers in Indianapolis seized two shipments of the fake Rolex watches on April 27 and 29. The watches were being shipped from Hong Kong and were on their way to Brooklyn.
The CBP said offers were tipped off about the shipments based on intelligence gathering and a past history of fraudulent shipments from the vendor. Inside the first shipment, officers discovered 300 counterfeit Rolex watches. The second shipment had an additional 160 counterfeit watches. If the watches were real, they would have been worth $10.1 million.
Chicago Director of Field Operations, LaFonda D. Sutton-Burke emphasized the necessary role CBP plays in protecting the economy and consumer safety and health.
“No one buys a luxury brand watch expecting it to fail or fall apart. As consumers increasingly purchase from online or third-party vendors, our officers are at the frontline to guard against defrauders expecting to make money selling fake merchandise.”
CBP said the rapid growth of e-commerce is giving counterfeit and pirated goods more ways to enter the U.S. economy. Consumers often believe they are buying a genuine product, but soon realize the item is substandard.
“This is just another example of the work our officers do to protect consumers and the U.S. economy,” said Jeremy Brodsky, Port Director-Indianapolis. “Our officers are at the frontline protecting the U.S. economy and guarding against criminals making money by selling fake merchandise.”
The CBP said counterfeit goods hurt the U.S. economy, cost Americans their jobs, threaten consumer health and safety, and fund criminal activity.