Counterfeit COVID test kits, medication and facemasks seized by CBP.

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, CBP officers in Baltimore and Pittsburgh seized shipments of unapproved or counterfeit COVID-19 medications, facemasks and testing kits.

The seizure included more than 58,000 face masks with designs violating trademarks of several designer consumer brands, professional sports teams, car manufacturers and cartoon characters. See below for a sampling of the various designs violating protected marks.

In addition to the facemasks, CBP officers also seized products claiming to be medication for COVID infected persons and more than 130 test kits not on the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) list. Due to the non-compliance with FDA rules, the goods were seized and deemed inadmissible.

If you have had your good seized by Customs for violating FDA rules, contact seizure attorney David Hsu by phone/text anytime at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

Images of seized test kits, source: CBP.gov

$2 million in counterfeit goods seized by CBP.

Counterfeit goods, source: CBP.gov

CBP officers in Louisville, Kentucky seized shipments from Dubai and Hong Kong containing over $2.0 million in counterfeit goods. The shipment from Dubai was labeled “men’s clocks” and upon inspection contained luxury watches from “Piguet”, “Hublot”, “Richard Mille” and “Cartier. The CBP import specialist determined the goods were counterfeit.

The second shipment from Hong Kong was labeled as “pedometers” – but in reality contained 180 “LV” watches and 65 “Oakley” sunglasses. Customs estimate the total seizure of the goods, if authentic, was worth $2,360,540.

The customs media release didn’t mention this – but if you have a shipment of goods destined for the US and detained by Customs, the typical 5-day rule of Customs to hold your goods does not apply. In general, seizures based on suspected counterfeit or IP violations do not have to abide by the 5-day rule and you may be looking at 2-4 weeks before your goods are seized or released.

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

Syringes with unapproved drugs seized by FDA.

Seized syringes: source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection media release – officers seized a shipment of pre-filled syringes containing 200 Sodium Hyaluronate from Seoul, South Korea. Sodium Hyaluronate is used to treat osteoarthritis and seized for violation of the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) prohibiting the importation of any food, drug, device, tobacco product, or cosmetic that is adulterated or misbranded.

The FDA Office of Criminal Investigation seized the shipment that would be worth $10,666 if authentic. Typical FDA seizures are due to unapproved prescriptions containing manufactured using incorrect or harmful ingredients.

If you have had your shipment seized by Customs for FDA violations, contact seizure attorney David Hsu by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com or anytime by phone/text at 832-896-6288.

$46,000 in unreported currency seized.

Image of seized currency, source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, officers at the Brownsville and Matamoros International Bridge Port of Entry seized over $46,000 in unreported currency.

The inspection occurred when travelers were leaving the US to Mexico. During a routine inspection, CBP officers discovered $46,000 in currency and also seized the vehicle. According to the media release – the traveler with the unreported currency was referred to Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Author’s note – typically customs seizure of unreported currency are not referred out to HSI. If your currency seizure was referred to HSI, then Customs believes there is a criminal element to your seizure.

What’s the rule about traveling in and out of the country with currency?
It is legal to carry more than $10,000, but it is a federal offense not to declare currency or other monetary instruments when entering or exiting the US (and even if you have a layover in a US airport with no intention of entering the US).

What happens if Customs suspects I am carrying more than $10,000 in currency?
They will stop you and the party you are traveling with prior to boarding the plane. You will be given an opportunity to declare all currency and monetary instruments. You will be given a Fincen 105 form to sign. You must accurately state all the money you have. Once you sign the Fincen 105 form, CBP will search your belongings.

I received a “Notice of Seizure” and my currency was seized by CBP at the airport. What do I do?
If you receive a “Notice of Seizure” sent Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested, then you must respond or risk forfeiting all the seized funds. Typically you have 30 days from the date of the letter to respond to the seizure.

If you get a notice of seizure or if your currency was seized by Customs, contact David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

$1.1 million in counterfeit goods seized in Kentucky.

Counterfeit goods seized, source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, CBP officers in Louisville seized five shipments containing counterfeit goods, if authentic would be worth more than $1.1 million.

On that day, CBP seized multiple shipments, with 5 separate shipments containing: 30 “Louis Vuitton” toes, 4 “Dior” handbags, 2 “Gucci” handbags, 200 “YSL” purses and another 366 “LV” bags. The last shipment contained a box with Louis Vuitton wallets.

When Customs detains goods for suspicion of counterfeit goods, CBP will submit photos or send samples to the trademark or other intellectual property rights holder. Almost 100% of the time the trademark holder will notify Customs the importer of record does not have a right to import the covered goods. If so, then Customs will seize the goods and send a “Notice of Sezizure” to the importer of record.

If you have had your goods seized by Customs, call David Hsu or text anytime at 832-896-6288 or email attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

CBP seizes counterfeit Air Pods and Apple watches.

Seized counterfeit Apple watches, source: CBP.gov

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officers in Chicago inspected and seized seven boxes from Hong Kong containing 423 smart watches and 200 earphones. With suspected intellectual property seizures, CBP will send photos or samples of the items to the Electronics Center of Excellence and Expertise (Electronics CEE). The CEE will then verify with the property rights holder if the importer was authorized to use the word mark. 100% of the time the property rights holder will reply the importer of record is not authorized to import the goods and the entire shipment will be seized.

In addition to registering the “Apple”, “iPhone” with Customs, companies can also protect the shape, design, form and function of the items. For example, the photo above shows the same shape and design of an Apple Watch. CBP estimates the value of the shipment, if authentic would be approximately $204,168.

What happens after a seizure?
If you are an importer, after a seizure, CBP will send you a “Notice of Seizure”. You will then have 30 days to respond to the Notice of Seizure, if you do not – then Customs will begin forfeiture of your goods.

Contact David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com if you have received a seizure notice to discuss your options.

Unauthorized COVID medicine seized.

COVID-19 treatment bills – source: CBP.gov

Since July, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Officers in Seattle have seized 8 shipments totaling over 2,400 pills of unauthorized influenza treatments for COVID-19. Working with the FDA, CBP prevents unauthorized medicines that may mislead consumers by falsely claiming to treat or prevent diseases.

If you have had your goods seized by Customs and want to explore your options contact David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

Counterfeit fireplaces seized by Customs.

Counterfeit fireplace; source: CBP.gov

In late July, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in Minnesota inspected a rail container for Seattle and seized 15,015 fireplaces for violating intellectual property rights (IPR). CBP estimates the value of the seizure of $523,784 if the fireplaces were genuine.

CBP did not specify which brand of fireplaces were copied and the image supplied by CBP (above) does not specify the name brand.

If you have had your goods seized by CBP, there may be some options available – contact David Hsu by phone/text anytime at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

Customs seizes fake watches valued at nearly $2 million.

Image of seized watches, source: CBP.gov


U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers in Ohio seized 54 counterfeit watches from two packages shipped from China – and according to CBP, if authentic would total over $1.9 million.

According to Customs, the fake watches were replicas of luxury brands such as: Audemar Piguet, Rolex, Cartier, and Gucci. The watches were manifested as “timers and “watch” with a declared value of $33 and $200.

Author’s note – usually Customs will detain suspected counterfeit goods and then verify the authenticity of the watches. Authenticity usually occurs by sending photos or samples to the property rights holder. 100% of the time the property rights holder will say the goods are counterfeit. During this period of time, there is nothing for the importer to do, except wait to receive notice the goods will be seized. A “Notice of Seizure” will be sent to the address where the watches were to be sent – after you receive a Notice of Seizure, be sure to mark the date of the letter. You will have 30 days to respond to a seizure notice.

If you have received a seizure notice and want to discuss your options – call David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

Counterfeit batons seized by Customs.

Seized batons, source: CBP.gov

Instead of the usual counterfeit bags, belts and wallets – last week U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers Cincinnati seized over 800 counterfeit batons. The batons were counterfeits of batons and packaged as batons from companies “511 Tactical” and “Armament Systems and Procedures (ASP)” goods.

The batons were manufactured in Shenzhen, China and described as “selfie sticks” and “window breakers”. Customs claims the batons also contained accessories as spear tips.

Author’s note – while not mentioned in the media release, the next step is for Customs to issue a seizure notice to the importer of record, giving the importer an opportunity to petition Customs to release the goods.

Also, in addition to seizing the batons for being counterfeit, CBP likely seized the goods for being mislabeled on the entry paperwork as “selfie sticks” and “window breakers”.

If you have received a seizure notice, or have had your goods seized, contact attorney David Hsu by phone/text at anytime 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com to discuss your options.