Seen and heard: Counterfeiting news in brief

Fuel adulteration in Pakistan, knock-off Damien Hirst artwork, a Philippine counterfeit mega-factory and fake car parts in India.

Pakistan turns to marker compounds to curb fuel adulteration

Pakistan has a big problem with adulterated fuels, and has announced plans to mandate the use of chemical markers in locally-produced kerosene - thought to be the primary adulterant in higher-priced products like petrol, high speed diesel (HSD) and high-octane blending component (HOBC), reports Kerosene is generally a tax-free product while there are levies of 40-50 per cent on the other products, it notes. The country will now start a tender process among fuel-marker producers.

Knock-off Damien Hirst gang charged in New York

Three men have been charged in New York with fraud and grand larceny after a scam involving counterfeit Damien Hirst artworks that duped unsuspecting purchasers out of $400,000, according to the New York County District Attorney's Office. Vincent Lopreto (52), Marco Saverino (34) and Paul Motta (50) are accused of conning buyers from countries including the UK, US, Italy, Taiwan and South Korea. Four fraudulent sales were made to Manhattan residents and two more sales were made to an undercover investigator posing as a buyer. Lopreto previously pleaded guilty to selling forged pieces of art, which were advertised online as original Damien Hirst prints, was sentenced to two-to-four years in state prison in 2014.

Counterfeit goods factory taken down in Philippines

A concealed factory producing counterfeit toiletries, medicines, shoes and cigarettes in Bulacan state, Philippines, has been taken out of action by Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) officers, says a Manila Bulletin report. The plant was hidden inside a warehouse and was producing goods in quantities for nationwide distribution – worth "billions of pesos," it says. The counterfeits were of brands such as Palmolive, Dove, Sun Silk, Cream Silk, Johnson products, Safeguard, Cetaphil, Gucci shoes and Marlboro. Other seized items include candies, lubricants, cigarettes, motor oils, used clothing, medicines, insect repellent, and deodorant.

Delhi cops crack down on fake automotive parts

Police in Delhi, India, have busted an operation selling counterfeit automotive parts such as oil, diesel and air filters- including fake packaging and labels - copying brands including Bosch, Mahindra & Mahindra and Maruti Suzuki, reports The items – worth over Rs 10 lakh (around $15,500) – were discovered in a warehouse in Shahadra. One man, named as Hardeep Singh, has been arrested in connection with the racket.

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