Photo: Fake iPads
Just as the Apple-loving world is anxiously awaiting the official unveiling of iPad2 on March 2nd, counterfeiters are trying to get the American consumer to buy their fake iPad. Case in point - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at Port of Ponce in Puerto Rico seized a parcel with 15 boxes of an item called iRobot. The problem is there is no Apple product named iRobot, nor can any other product carry the ‘i’ name to it without being an official Apple designation.
The parcel, arriving from China, was falsely declared as digital photo frames, in hopes no one would notice they were fake iPads.
The false declaration is considered a fraudulent attempt to import the merchandise, since the unit value and description on the invoice were altered to circumvent CBP regulations.
“To facilitate legitimate trade and maintain confidence in the local commercial environment requires that we enforce intellectual property right (IPR) laws. CBP focuses our enforcement efforts on detecting IPR violations. In general, we protect computer programs, video games, toy designs and other intellectual creations against unauthorized reproductions, derivations, distribution or display,” said Marcelino Borges, director of field operations for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Infringements to intellectual property rights cause significant loses to businesses who legally attempt to sell their brands in a free market economy.
Importers violating intellectual property rights may be subject to civil penalties and/or criminal prosecution.