$500 million USD worth of counterfeit luxury goods were recently seized by Federal investigators, according to reports. 22 large shipping containers filled with fake Louis Vuitton bags, Hermes belts, Chanel fragrances and more made its way to legitimate New York, New Jersey and Los Angeles ports with plans of them being sold on the black market. 33 people were arrested in the sting operation that has been ongoing for 6 years.
The individuals involved have been charged with conspiracy, trafficking in counterfeit goods and trademark counterfeiting according to NYT. Furthermore, the fake items have been traced to China as the origin of manufacturing and shipment with those companies being connected to “legitimate” ones in the U.S. The U.S. Homeland Security Investigation team has been credited for the bust who also seized 9 properties in Queens, Staten Island and Brooklyn — all are linked to those charged.
“The defendants allegedly smuggled millions of dollars of counterfeit luxury goods into our country, depriving companies of their valuable and hard-earned intellectual property,” Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division commented. The bust is being heralded as one of the biggest stings involving luxury counterfeit goods in the U.S.
In real luxury news, Kanye West recently wore a Virgil Abloh-designed LV suit to 2 Chainz’s wedding.