£15m haul of counterfeit goods seized in Cheetham Hill in three days of raids

April 27, 2021

Police have seized an estimated £15 million worth of counterfeit branded clothing, shoes, electrical goods, watches, jewellery, and perfume during three days of raids in Cheetham Hill.
Suspected fake medication was also found and seized in raids on four premises in the area, near to Manchester city centre.

Police have seized an estimated £15 million worth of counterfeit branded clothing, shoes, electrical goods, watches, jewellery, and perfume during three days of raids in Cheetham Hill.
Suspected fake medication was also found and seized in raids on four premises in the area, near to Manchester city centre.
In total more than 45,000 items were confiscated, including suspected counterfeit shoes, clothing, handbags, watches, make up, perfume, sunglasses, batteries, headphones and medication.
Fake brand labels have also been uncovered- these are often imported separately to be sewn onto counterfeit clothing and shoes to give them a cachet.
Mobile phones and cash has also been removed from those arrested.
The joint action between the three forces, Border Force and Immigration Services, saw seven people arrested – six for offences relating to the importation and distribution of counterfeit goods and one for intent to supply prescription drugs.
Four premises in Strangeways, Manchester, were raided by officers between Monday April 19 and Wednesday April 21 in the targeted raids.
The large-scale operation aimed to crackdown on the sale of counterfeit goods.
Search warrants, which developed from a previous operation that involved the sale and distribution of counterfeit items, saw 60 officers and staff working together.
Officers said the seized items would result in losses of £15 million for legitimate retailers.
Supt Peter Ratcliffe, of the City of London Police’s Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU), said: “Selling counterfeit goods is illegal and, in the case of counterfeit electricals and medication, extremely dangerous.
“This huge three-day operation, plus the number of arrests and vast amount of evidence seized, should send a strong message to other criminals involved in counterfeit goods that it won’t be tolerated.
“For the public, it is vital to remember you don’t know what other crimes you are funding when buying counterfeit goods, or the conditions those working for the criminals are conducting their business in.
“This operation showed the effectiveness of partnership working and I thank Greater Manchester Police, and our other partners involved, for all their help.”
Det Supt Paul Denn from the North West Regional Organised Crime Unit said: “Buying and selling counterfeit goods is not a victimless crime.
“As well as damaging legitimate businesses, it helps to fund organised crime, and with that often comes violence.
“Whenever we receive intelligence about illegal goods, we will always work closely with our colleagues in the City of London Police and other partners to investigate and take the appropriate action.”
Insp Helen Hallworth, of Greater Manchester Police said: “Working in partnerships such as this is instrumental when tackling counterfeit operations, as each unit is able to bring its own precise specialisms to help achieve the most effective policing operation.
“City of London is the national policing lead for fraud and we welcome their involvement along with that from our other partners from the NW PIPCU unit as well as Immigration and Border Force when tackling counterfeit operations within the Greater Manchester area.
https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/15m-haul-counterfeit-goods-seized-20446983