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The Tax Agency apprehended over two million counterfeited products in 2013

Fight against piracy

  • The Customs Department completed almost 2,300 operations against the import of false goods, reported 157 alleged criminal offences and arrested 167 people for this criminal activity
  • Textile and footwear, eyewear and electronic components account for more than half of the products seized
  • The United Nations launches campaign to inform consumers of the economic and social harm caused by counterfeits

14 February 2014. The Tax Agency intercepted more than two million counterfeit products during 2013 through almost 2,300 operations (withholdings) carried out by the Customs Department.If they had reached the market, these false items would have reached a value of 230.9 million euros.During the course of these activities 157 alleged offences have been reported, with corresponding charges for criminal offences relating to industrial and intellectual property rights violations, and 167 people have been arrested, allegedly linked to this criminal activity.

By product group, the highest number of seizures corresponds to clothing, footwear and accessories.In 2013, just over half a million units were seized, 24% of the total.In turn, more than 355,000 glasses (17% of the total) and more than 275,000 products related to electronics (13% of the total) were seized.

However, counterfeit watches are the most valuable products seized.Last year the Tax Agency seized more than 146,000 counterfeit watches, with an estimated value of more than 110 million euros, almost 48% of the total.The value of the glasses seized is estimated at 46 million euros, and the value of the textiles, footwear and accessories at almost 28 million euros.

Half of the interventions concerned commercial air shipments and 12% concerned sea shipments, while 26% were concentrated on travellers' baggage (both air and sea).By number of products seized, the main route of introduction continues to be commercial shipments by sea (almost 80 percent of the total).

By origin of the counterfeit goods, the majority of the products seized came from Asia (67%) and Africa (31%).Compared to the previous year, there was a drop in the number of seizures of goods from the Asian continent, which in 2012 represented 77% of the total, and a parallel increase in seizures of products from Africa.

UN Campaign

To raise consumer awareness of the harmful effects of the illicit trade in counterfeit goods, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) today launched a new global campaign under the slogan "Counterfeit goods:don't support organised crime" informs consumers that by buying counterfeit products they may be financing organised criminal gangs, endangering their own health and contributing to other ethical and ecological problems.

The UN campaign is built around a new public service announcement which can be viewed at the following link:http://youtu.be/y4zjLUwCjDA

The ad urges consumers to "look beyond" counterfeit products in order to gain a greater understanding of the various impacts of this illegal trade.

Aware of the serious economic and social damage that the falsification business constitutes, the Tax Agency fraud control annual plan considers one of its priorities the full control of the import and sale of goods, in order to break up possible black market circuits.Therefore the Tax Agency carries out a risk profile analysis of all national imports taking into account to the country of origin, type of product, acting parties and many other characteristics of the commercial operation.

Results by product groups:

2012

2013

Units

Assessment

Units

% / Total

Assessment

% / Total

Watches

63,642

239,366,245

146,884

7

110,421,224

48

Eyewear (includes sunglasses)

45,844

5,869,300

355,576

17

45,909,133

20

Clothes, footwear and accessories

429,411

22,953,121

503,096

24

27,971,420

12

Perfumes and cosmetics

170,550

6,075,822

246,439

12

19,937,762

9

Bags, boxes and purses

215,635

52,833,291

50,685

2

11,902,497

5

Electronic equipment and components

203,648

6,360,832

275,520

13

5,625,700

2

Jewellery

55,715

1,372,628

67,207

3

3,120,845

1

Electronic games and toys

117,524

1,317,448

188,719

9

2,919,096

1

Other

634,574

3,004,368

222,637

11

3,126,465

1

TOTAL

1,936,543

339,153,054

2,056,763

100

230,934,142

100

Vigilancia Aduanera:Presentation of charges for smuggling and related offences

Free telephone 900351378. Email: va.adu@aeat.es