Comments from the Brand Protection Manager for Nike:
'We recently worked with Trading Standards on an operation on a UK market. The team at Trading Standards demonstrated impressive commitment, pulling off a successful, large-scale operation despite resource constraints. The attitude and hard work of the entire team was commendable.
Despite ongoing efforts by Trading Standards on the market, the problem of counterfeit goods had escalated to beyond their resources. I had also noticed a trend of parcels of counterfeit Nike trainers being stopped at airports heading to this area, which I suspected were to be sold on the market.
I instructed a team of investigators from The Surveillance Group to gather intelligence on the market over a period of several weeks, and they were successful in identifying 5 linked stalls, primary and secondary suspects trading on each, 14 associated storage containers and the home addresses of all involved (13 of which were living together in just 2 caravans).
Trading Standards were able to gain the cooperation of local police to hit the caravans at 6.30am on Friday 26 August, arresting all of the key suspects. We then went on to raid the 5 stalls, and uncovered a total of 18 associated storage containers filled with counterfeit goods.
A total of approximately 12,600 counterfeit items were seized, filling two 40’ containers. The majority of items seized were Nike and Adidas trainers, but also included Ugg, GHD, Converse, Ralph Lauren, Chanel, Timberland, G Star, Bench, Gucci and Superdry. We believe the retail value of the goods seized to be in excess of £1 million, and this was a hugely successful operation in uncovering and severely disrupting a large counterfeit network in the UK.
Thank you to everybody involved, in particular the team at Trading Standards, Andy Rhodes from the Surveillance Group and all the Trademark Reps. It was a very long, tiring and rainy day for all involved!'