Thousands of fake name brand shoes seized
Thousands of pairs of counterfeit name brand shoes valued at millions of dollars were seized from K's Superstore at 88 Orange Street, Downtown Kingston yesterday during a raid by a joint Contraband Enforcement team from Jamaica Customs and a squad from Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime branch of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).
"Several millions of dollars," was the answer from Clarence Bailey, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), when asked to put a value on the quantity of goods seized from the store operated by Chinese nationals.
He was awaiting the Scenes of Crime team and other police personnel to help in the counting and documentation of all the knock-off Nike, Puma, Adidas, Vans, Polo, All Star and Levi footwear seized, before a more definitive estimate could be made.
The senior policeman explained that yesterday's raid was part of a coordinated regional operation code name MAYA with similar operations taking place right across the Caribbean, as well North And South America, in an effort to clamp down on illicit, counterfeit and un-customed goods.
Piles of boxes of the counterfeits shoes were found in an upstairs storeroom, while hundreds of pairs were stacked on display shelves downstairs, where a few Chinese national sat around, while the police and customs officers went about their duties. Patrons were turned away from the store with the explanation that it was closed temporarily but DSP Bailey said a decision as to whether it would continue in business would be made by the hierarchy of the JCF.
However, The Gleaner has learnt that based on the contraband goods seized, charges will be laid against the owner/operator of the store, which has the number 88 written atop the door but no name or other identification wording affixed.
Meanwhile, DSP Bailey insisted that more such raids would follow but declined to provide any operational details or a time line.