CBP seizes $31m-worth of fake perfume

US customs has revealed it seized nearly half a million bottles of counterfeit perfume mimicking some of the cosmetics industry’s top brands in recent months.

Ahead of Valentine’s Day, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers assigned to the Los Angeles/Long Beach seaport complex said they had intercepted 475,056 bottles of imported perfume – worth an estimated $31m at retail prices.

The bottles were made to resemble products from Giorgio Armani, Burberry, Calvin Klein, Chanel, Coach, Dior, Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, Guess, Hugo Boss, Lacoste, Michael Kors, Ralph Lauren, Versace, Victoria Secret, and Perry Ellis among others.

Between October 1, 2017, and the end of January CBP seized 11 shipments containing counterfeit and confusingly similar fragrances that violated the registered trademarks belonging to 34 top name brands.

“Upon first glance you see the name brand packaging, both box and perfume bottle have colours resembling those of the genuine products,” said CBP in a statement.

“Oftentimes the perfumes state they are manufactured in France to emphasize a more luxurious product, but upon closer look, they are actually made in China.” It points put that as fragrance is absorbed by the body consumers wearing counterfeit perfume could be exposed to potentially hazardous chemicals.

Pharmaceutical and personal care products comprised 5 per cent of the number of counterfeit seizures by CBP in fiscal year 2016 by value, with a total estimated manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $73m.

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