Counterfeit Bob Marley and the Joker pictures seized.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the Area Port of Norfolk-Newport News, Va., seized counterfeit 3-D holographic Bob Marley and Joker pictures on July 19, 2022, that were destined to Louisville, Kentucky. (CBP Photo/Handout)
Images of seized 3-D of Bob Marley and the Joker. Source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection media release, CBP officers in Virginia seized counterfeit 3-D holographic pictures. The pictures contained images of Bob Marley and the Joker. The six Bob Marley photos and 80 Joker pictures arrived from China and were destined to an address in Kentucky.

CBP seized the shipment due to violations of trademarks for Bob Marley and the Joker. CBP’s Apparel, Footwear and Textiles CEE evaluated the shipment and the CEE trade experts seized the shipment for trademark violations.

Have you had your goods seized by CBP? Contact David Hsu 24/7 by phone/text: 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

US Dept. of the Treasury Releases 2021 CFIUS Annual Report.

At the beginning of August, the Department of the Treasury, Chair of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), released the public version of the CFIUS Annual Report to Congress for calendar year 2021.

The Annual Report provides statistics on transactions filed with CFIUS in 2021. As you are aware, CFIUS is tasked with reviewing foreign transactions and investments in the United States that may be harmful to national security.

According to the published report, highlights for 2021 include:

  1. CFIUS reviewed 164 declarations and 272 notices, a record number of covered transactions
  2. CFIUS cleared 60% of cases in the 30-day assessment period or within the initial 45-day review period for a notice.
  3. CFIUS provided comments on draft notices within 6 business days and accepted formal notices within 6 business days. A reduction from 9 days in 2020.

A copy of the report can be found here: https://home.treasury.gov/system/files/206/CFIUS-Public-AnnualReporttoCongressCY2021.pdf

If you or anyone you know has any CFIUS questions, or needs assistance with a CFIUS filing, contact David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

$30+ Billion in Trade Stuck at US Ports in mid-July.

intermodal container stacked on port
Photo by Samuel Wölfl on Pexels.com

According to multiple sources, over $30+ billion dollars in trade are stuck at the port or stuck at sea due to port congestion in the United States. MarineTraffic estimates there are over 460,000 twenty-foot container equivalent units (TEU’s) on vessels waiting off the East Coast and 180,000 TEU’s off the West Coast. MDS Transmodal estimates the total value of the value of trade stuck on the water is over $30+ billion.

In addition to vessels stuck on the water, the Port of Los Angeles and Long Beach highlight congestion on land – with 33,484 rail containers waiting nine days or longer at the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach combined.

Do you have an import, export, trade or compliance related problems, contact David Hsu by phone/text anytime at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

CBP Seizes Counterfeit Beats Earphones.

Image of seized “Beats” earphones, source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, CBP officers in New York seized a shipment of counterfeit Beats brand earphones. The July shipment was selected and examined by CBP. Officers found the earphones packed in zip lock bags and bearing a strong resemblance to Beats “Tour” earphones.

CBP suspected the earphones to be counterfeit due to the lack of labels, invoices, and packaging. As with all counterfeit goods, a sample was submitted to the Electronics Center of Excellence and Expertise where it was determined the items were counterfeit and violated the Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) of the Beats brand holder. If authentic, the seized shipment were worth a MSRP of $25,000.

Counterfeit Sports Memorabilia and Paraphernalia Seized by US Customs.

Counterfeit championship ring, source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, in mid-July CBP officers in Indianapolis and Louisville seized 178 counterfeit championship rings and 171 counterfeit professional sports jerseys that, if genuine would have a combined MSRP of $288,350.

The seized items including a Championship rings featuring baseball teams such as the Atlanta Braves, Boston Red Sox, St. Louis Cardinals and basketball teams such as the Boston Celtics and even collegiate teams from the University of Georgia.

The seized shipments all originated in China and were destined to various addresses in the US. CBP recognized the goods as counterfeit due to the poor quality of materials, poor printing and shipping the goods to residential addresses.

The remainder of the CBP media release highlighted the dangers of buying counterfeit goods and the belief counterfeit merchandise funds organized crime.

While I am sure counterfeit goods does fund organized crime, I believe the people who buy commercial quantities of counterfeit Championship rings are aware the rings are not authentic and purchase these for collecting, and not to re-sell as authentic.

If you or someone you know have had their goods seized for suspicion of being counterfeit, contact David Hsu at anytime by phone/text or email: attorney.dave@yahoo.com or 832-896-6288.

Counterfeit diabetic socks seized by CBP.

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, CBP officers in Virginia seized nearly 120,000 pairs of counterfeit socks frequently purchased by diabetic patients. The MSRP, if authentic, totals over $1.8 million. CBP verified whether the Hugh Ugoli branded cotton socks from Turkey contained the “Seal of Cotton” trademark. CBP officers verified the shipment with CBP’s Apparel, Footwear and Textiles Centers of Excellence and Expertise, for a final authenticity determination and an appraisal. CBP’s trade exports found the entire shipment was counterfeit for violating the “Seal of Cotton” trademark.

In general, products with the Seal of Cotton trademark, owned and licensed exclusively by Cotton Incorporated, are evaluated based on the cotton content in their product. Licensees of the “Seal of Cotton” must have all artwork and packaging bearing the “Seal of Cotton” trademark approved prior to manufacturing and distribution.

If you have had your shipment seized by CBP for violating the “Seal of Cotton” or other trademarks such as the iPhone, Android, USB, HDMI or any other trademark logo – contact David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

Bipartisan Ocean Shipping Reform Act (OSRA) signed into law.

assorted color cargo containers near body of water
Photo by Matthis on Pexels.com

In mid-June, President Biden signed a bipartisan bill to help US importers, exporters, freight forwarders, and other companies seeing high shipping costs and other problems since the start of the pandemic.

One highlight of the bill was to address the increasing demurrage and detention (D&D) charges which have skyrocketed in the past year. Common carriers under the new law, now have to certify that D&D charges comply with federal rules and regulations. The certification also requires common carrier invoices to include information (1) the applicable D&D rule on which the daily rate is based; (2) the applicable rate or rates per the applicable rule; (3) the total amount due; (4) the contact information for questions or requests for mitigation of fees; and (5) a statement that the common carrier’s performance did not cause or contribute to the underlying invoiced charges. The new bill requires this information, and if the common carrier does not provide the information in the invoice – then there is no obligation to pay the D&D charges.

Another highlight is the ability for individuals to submit complaints to the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) about charges from a common carrier. The FMC is empowered to conduct a prompt investigation and the common carrier would have the burden of proof to establish reasonableness of any D&D charges.

In addition to addressing D&D charges, other parts of the OSRA require the FMC to: (1) define “unfair or unjust discriminatory methods”, (2) create a shipping exchange registry to provide certain services, such as mediation of contract disputes, (3) public disclosure and publication on the FMC website of false D&D invoices and quarterly reports, a (4) place for the public to submit complaints, concerns, reports of noncompliance, request for investigation, etc, and a (5) consumer affairs office to assist, mediate and facilitate challenges and disputes involving cargo shipments.

If you have any questions how the OSRA, and or would like to update your compliance program to address the new OSRA requirements – contact David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

Counterfeit goods worth $22.5 million seized by Customs.

Image of seized counterfeit watches, source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, CBP officers in Kentucky seized a shipment of 585 counterfeit designer watches bearing trademark logos for Rolex and Cartier. The shipment from Hong Kong was headed for a New York address, and if real, would be worth approximately $22.6 million.

The seizure of counterfeit watches totaled over $1.18 billion (MSRP) last year and will likely increase due to the large number of electronic commerce sales from China being imported into the United States.

If you have had your shipment seized for suspicion of being a counterfeit good, contact customs seizure attorney David Hsu by phone/text/email at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

460 counterfeit “Rolex” watches seized.

Partial image of the over 460 seized “Rolex” watches. Source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), media release, CBP officers seized over 460 counterfeit watches in late April from multiple shipments.

The two shipments seized originated from Hong Kong and were to be delivered to an individual home in Brooklyn. The CBP media release mentioned the address has a history of receiving counterfeit goods. Most likely CBP singled out these shipments and upon further inspection found a total of 460 counterfeit Rolex watches with a combined MSRP over $10 million if authentic.

If you have had your goods seized by Customs, or if you receive a notice from Customs detaining or seizing your goods, contact David Hsu anytime by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

Did you purchase ANY merchandise on your overseas trip? Be sure to declare it.

Sample of seized goods from traveler arriving from Thailand, source: CBP.gov

According to a CBP media release, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at Dulles Airport seized consumer goods from an individual flying back into the US after a trip to Thailand.

The passenger was flying to Dulles on a flight from South Korea. When clearing Customs at Dulles, CBP officers asked her if she purchased any merchandise on her trip.

In response, she declared in writing and verbally that she did not purchase any items and was returning from Thailand with six pieces of luggage. However, when CBP performed a secondary inspection, they found and seized over 298 counterfeit items among 12 pieces of luggage belonging to the passenger. The total value of the goods, if authentic totaled over $500,000.

She stated that she returned from Thailand with six pieces of luggage, but declared, both verbally and in writing, that she did not purchase any merchandise on her trip.

She stated that she returned from Thailand with six pieces of luggage, but declared, both verbally and in writing, that she did not purchase any merchandise on her trip. However, when airline employees brought the woman’s baggage to the CBP inspection area, they examined 12 bags that were tagged to the traveler. After examining the bags, CBP found 298 pieces of clothing, hats, shoes and jewelry with marks from brand names such as Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Burberry, Prada, Gianni Versace and others.

After the seizure, experts from the Center for Excellence and Expertise determined the goods were counterfeit. Counterfeit goods were then seized by Customs.

This media release is a good reminder for travelers to:

  1. Don’t lie to CBP and never sign anything that is not truthful.
  2. If you are asked about quantity of any items or value of currency – be sure to over estimate. There is no duty and no cost to bring in currency or monetary instruments – but you must declare it.
  3. CBP likely already knows the answers to their questions before they search you and before they ask you any questions. CBP has access to passenger information and has developed profiles on passengers and certain metrics they use to determine which passenger gets secondary screening.

If you or anyone you know has had your goods seized by Customs, contact customs seizure attorney David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.