Breakout at Tiffany's

Local Police crack counterfeit jewellery ring

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Local Police officers have been highly praised by Tiffany & Co. for nabbing hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of counterfeit merchandise bearing the labels of Tiffany and other name brands.

The raids were conducted after an investigation by Tiffany’s regional manager of security who connected the bogus goods to eBay auction sites and alerted the authorities.

The seized goods included counterfeit “Tiffany” silver rings, necklaces, bracelets and other jewellery as well as phony Tiffany packaging materials.

“We commend the law enforcement authorities for their responsiveness” said Dave McGowan, Vice President-Security Worldwide. “Those who traffic in phony merchandise cheat consumers and debase the integrity of brands that have taken many decades to establish. The problem has been aggravated by Internet auction sites like eBay that enable criminals to operate counterfeit distribution rings anonymously.”

Raids were carried out last month after Tiffany’s security manager and law enforcement authorities traced counterfeit items offered by several eBay sellers to an address in the borough of Hounslow by Hounslow Trading Standards and a local Police Safer Neighbourhoods Team led by PS Kevin Sinclair.

Tiffany & Co. has been working for years to thwart the trade in fake merchandise bearing its brand name, but the problem has continued to grow, McGowan said. To protect its customers and its reputation, the company filed suit against eBay in the USA almost two years ago, for direct and contributory counterfeiting and infringement.

March 22, 2006