Louisville CBP seized over $109M in counterfeits in 2020.

Image of seized goods, source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, in the fiscal year ending September 30th, CBP officers in Louisville seized over $109 million worth of counterfeit goods.

The $109 million in seized goods was accumulated during the 741 counterfeit seizures made among 343 shipments with 46% of the counterfeit goods being imported in Hong Kong. The media release also said seized goods included jewelry, footwear, bags, wallets and electronics.

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

$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.

More counterfeit seizures – “Dior X Air Jordan 1”.

Image of seized shoes, source: CBP.gov

Another busy day for U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers working in Dallas where they seized a shipment of counterfeit footwear (Nike basketball shoes) that are reported by CBP to retail for $2,000 per pair. Customs described the shoes as the “Dior X Air Jordan 1” shoes ultimately destined for Mexico. Besides Nike, the shipment also contained shoes featuring registered trademarks by Adidas.

The entire shipment contained over 1,800 pairs of shoes in 60 boxes from Hong Kong and labeled as “Ball Golf”. CBP estimates the seizure is valued at over $4.3 million dollars.

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

New Country of Origin Marking Rules for Goods Made in Hong Kong –

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Photo by Brayden Law on Pexels.com

President Trump signed Executive Order 13936 in mid-July changing the country of origin marking rules for goods made in Hong Kong – see below for a copy and paste from the CSMS of the new marking rules:

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Cargo Systems Messaging Service
CSMS #43633412 – GUIDANCE: New Marking Rules for Goods Made in Hong Kong – Executive Order 13936

PURPOSE

The purpose of this memorandum is to provide guidance on the new country of origin marking rules for goods produced in Hong Kong based on the President’s Executive Order (EO) on Hong Kong Normalization (EO 13936, dated July 14, 2020).

SUMMARY

On July 14, 2020, the President signed EO 13936 on Hong Kong Normalization. The EO suspends the application of section 201(a) of the United States-Hong Kong Policy Act of 1992, as amended (22 U.S.C. 5721(a)), to 19 U.S.C. 1304, Marking of imported articles and containers. Appropriate actions must be commenced within 15 days (effective July 29, 2020) of the EO’s issue date.

GUIDANCE

The position set forth in this document is applicable as of July 29, 2020. A transition period will be granted for importers to implement marking consistent with this position for imported goods produced in Hong Kong. Such goods, when entered or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption into the United States, after September 25, 2020 must be marked to indicate that their origin is “China” for purposes of 19 U.S.C. 1304.

Transition Period

CBP will grant a 45-day transition period, until September 25, 2020, in order to give the trade sufficient time to adjust to the new marking rules. During this period, Personnel from the Ports of Entry and Centers of Excellence and Expertise (Centers) are directed to neither issue marking notices, nor take further enforcement actions on goods produced in Hong Kong for purposes of 19 U.S.C. 1304. Centers should take measures to inform accounts of these new marking rules for Hong Kong set forth in the EO.

RELATED DOCUMENTS:

Country of Origin Marking of Products of Hong Kong (85 FR 48551, August 11, 2020)
The President’s Executive Order on Hong Kong Normalization (85 FR 43413, July 14, 2020)
1997 FR Hong Kong Customs 97-14662 (62 FR 30927, June 5, 1997)

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If you have any questions how the new country of origin marking rules will impact your business, contact David Hsu by phone/text anytime at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

$1.16 million in counterfeit good seized.

Seized handbag from Chicago, source: CBP.gov

Another day, another seizure – this time in Chicago on July 28th. CBP officers found 555 counterfeit Nike and Air Jordan shoes, 462 Louis Vuitton branded handbags, totes, backpacks, 165 Gucci handbags, totes, wallets, 13 Beats headphones and 10 Apple Airpods.

The media release noted the poor manufacturing and packaging quality as an indication the goods may be counterfeit. The shipment from Hong Kong (likely another reason why Customs believes the goods are counterfeit).

Author’s note – Customs can detain a shipment for up to 5 days to verify the authenticity of the goods seized. In this instance, CBP asked the importer of record to produce documentation showing they were licensed to import trademarked goods. If an importer cannot show they have a license to import goods of a certain brand holder – then the goods will be seized and a seizure notice will be issued.

Also, if a shipment has been detained for suspicion of violating trademark or copyright violations – the 5-day detention rule does not apply. The reason the 5-day rule does not apply is because CBP will contact the property rights holder and ask if the importer has a license to import the goods. Very rarely will the trademark holder side with the importer.

If you have had your goods seized by Customs, contact David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 to discuss your options. You can also email David at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

Hong Kong could lose special status and trade benefits.

Last year, the US passed a law that requires Hong Kong to retain independence to qualify for the continued favorable trading terms with the US. I mentioned this in my blog post on June 15th, 2019 here.

The bill requires the US Secretary of State to certify each year that Hong Kong remains autonomous from China. If Hong Kong does not pass the certification of independence from China, then Hong Kong would lose trade privileges with the US (goods from Hong Kong will now be subject to duties on goods from China).

Fast forward almost a year later – where in late May China’s central government passed a national security law to apply to Hong Kong (as Hong Kong has not been able to pass such a law since they were handed back to China in 1997). The new security law would ban secession, subversion of state power, terrorism, foreign intervention and allows mainland China’s state security agencies to operate in the city.

After passage of the security law, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Congress that Hong Kong was no longer independent from China – signaling a potential move towards Hong Kong not passing certification.

If Hong Kong loses it’s special status a big impact would be on tariffs on goods from Hong Kong would now apply. This would impact over $66 billion in trade according to 2018 trade numbers. In 2018, Hong Kong was America’s third-largest market for wine, 4th largest for been and seventh largest for agricultural products.

If you have any questions how your imports or exports to and from Hong Kong may be impacted, contact David Hsu 24/7 by phone/text to 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.

15,000 invasive mitten crabs seized since September 2019.

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Image of seized mitten crabs, source: CBP.gov

According to a US Customs and Border Protection media release, Customs agents in Cincinnati have seized 3,700 mitten crabs from China and Hong Kong in the past 4 months.

Over the past 4 months, 3,700 mitten crabs have been found in 51 shipments and were set to be delivered to New York. The shipments were labeled as “tools and various clothing articles”. Nationwide, Customs has seized over 15,000 mitten crabs since September 2019. The mitten crabs are considered a delicacy in Asia.

Here in the US, mitten crabs are an invasive species because they are omnivores and eat anything, impacting the food supply to aquatic plants, fish, algae, other crabs and all living organisms in the water. Mitten crabs are also especially invasive as they are found in fresh water when young and salty water in adult life. Mitten crabs also tend to burrow furthering land erosion and weakening levees and flood control measures.

If you have received a letter from Customs regarding the wrongful importation of invasive species or if you have questions about the exportation of foods that may be subject to Fish and Wildlife regulations, contact experienced Customs and seizure attorney David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

CBP seizes $90,000 in counterfeit goods from Hong Kong.

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Image of seized goods. Source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, officers seized two shipments of counterfeit products arriving at Pittsburgh International Airport.

The first shipment’s manifest indicated the package contained men’s casual shoes. Upon inspection, CBP found a Rolex watch, LV bracelet, Christian Loubouton shoes, par of Amiri jeans, Gucci jacket and a LV sweatshirt. If authentic, the merchandise would have a manufacturer suggested retail price of $90,798.

In the second shipment, the packing list indicated phones cases – but instead contained designer brand charms and jewelry.

As is the case in most counterfeit seizures, poor quality of items and lack of authentic packaging were common indications of counterfeit merchandise.

CEE?
In all counterfeit seizure cases, CBP typically sends the counterfeited items to the Consumer Products and Mass Merchandising Centers for Excellence and Expertise (CEE for short). The CEE center is sort of a misnomer, as the CEE offices are located throughout the US and not in a centralized location. The CEE center then verifies the authenticity of the goods with the trademark holders. In all cases, the trademark holder will claim the seized goods are counterfeit.

So what happens after a seizure?
The importer of record (person who will receive the package) will receive a seizure notice by certified mail, return receipt requested. The importer of recorder can then either abandon the items, file a petition, offer in compromise or refer to court action.

If you have had a shipment seized by Customs for alleged counterfeit violations or if you have received a notice of seizure, contact experienced seizure attorney David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

Counterfeit Nike shoes seized by Customs.

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Image of the seized shoes, source: cbp.gov

According a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, CBP officers in Mississippi seized more than $4,000 worth of counterfeit Nike Air Max, Nike Air Jordan’s, and Balenciaga shoes from Hong Kong.

The shoes were shipped in separate packages and described as “casual shoes”. Counterfeit goods entering the US are typically seized under 19 USC 1526 (e) for bearing the counterfeit trademarks.

If you or someone you know has had a shipment of good seized by Customs, there are steps you can take – contact experienced seizure attorney David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

CBP seizes counterfeit Cartier products valued over $2.6 million.

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Counterfeit Cartier bracelets, source: cbp.gov

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers in Louisiana intercepted 180 pieces of counterfeit Cartier jewelry from a shipment from Hong Kong. If authentic Cartier, the bracelets would hold a MSRP of more than $2.6 million.

CBP officers inspected the parcel with a packing list specifying “jewelry accessory”. Upon inspection, they found bracelets packaged in Cartier boxes and determined the poor quality bracelets were counterfeit.

As have been previously posted on this blog, Hong Kong is commonly known by CBP to frequently ship counterfeit jewelry such as watches and accessories such as hats. This seizure is the largest (in terms of dollar value) for the entire year.