$1.9m in fake diabetic socks seized by CBP in Virginia

US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) seized nearly 120,000 pairs of counterfeit copies of Hugh Ugoli diabetic cotton socks, worth almost $1.9m, at the area port of Norfolk-Newport News in Virginia.

Diabetic socks are designed to keep feet dry, decrease the risk of foot injury, and enhance blood circulation, aiming to reduce the risk of diabetic complications like foot ulcers. Hugh Ugoli's cotton socks retail for around $15 for a pack of three.

The shipment of 579 boxes initially arrived in a shipping container from Turkey on June 17, and was detained whilst in transit to an address in Loudoun County, Virginia. CBP officers inspected the shipment on June 20 and detained the socks on June 21 to verify the authenticity of trademarks on the packaging.

Last week, CBP’s trade experts reported that the entire shipment of 118,566 pairs of diabetic socks was counterfeit for violating the 'Seal of Cotton' trademark, owned and licensed exclusively by Cotton Inc.

"The sheer volume of this counterfeit diabetic sock shipment is alarming." said Mark Laria, CBP's Norfolk-Newport News area port director.

"Any level of substandard manufacturing, especially of these specialty socks, seriously endangers the health and well-being of our most vulnerable citizens who rely on them for comfort and blood circulation," he added.

"Customs and Border Protection remains committed to intercepting counterfeit and potentially dangerous consumer goods, and we strongly encourage consumers to protect themselves and their families by purchasing goods only from reputable vendors."

No one has been criminally charged in connection with the seizure, and an investigation continues, said CBP.

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