New York couple charged in fake luxury goods case

Designer sunglassesA husband and wife have been charged in the US with conspiring to traffic millions of dollars' worth of counterfeit sunglasses, watches, handbags and other items.

New York-based Le Fu Chen (40) and Hai Fan Huang (36) - also known as Tommy Chen and Cindy Huang - are accused of importing fake goods from China into the US, infringing the trademarks of well-known brands such as Coach, Michael Kors and Ray Ban.

The Roslyn Heights couple were arrested last week after a search of a warehouse rented by Chen found 130,000 counterfeit goods, as well as large quantities of luxury and designer brand labels.

The enforcement authorities were alerted to the duo's activities after multiple seizures of fake goods at postal service locations across the US and an air cargo facility.

The complaint - filed in a Manhattan federal court - alleges that Chen and Huang stored the imported counterfeit goods in multiple storage units and business suites - including a warehouse in Long Island - with the intent to transfer the goods to retailers in Manhattan and elsewhere.

They are each charged with one count of conspiring to traffic in counterfeit goods, and one count of trafficking in counterfeit goods.  Each defendant faces a maximum potential sentence of 20 years in prison.

"This couple allegedly conspired to profit from the sale of knock offs," commented Glenn Sorge, Special Agent-in-Charge for the Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) unit of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

"Fake products that infringe on business owners' intellectual property rights cost jobs and hurts the US economy," he added. 

Counterfeiting accounts for around 2 per cent of world trade, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), while the United Nations Office on Drug and Crimes (UNODC) has estimated that China is the source of two-thirds of all counterfeit goods.

Related articles:

     Want our news sent directly to your inbox?

Yes please 2


Home  |  About us  |  Contact us  |  Advertise  |  Links  |  Partners  |  Privacy Policy  |   |  RSS feed   |  back to top