By Betheena Kae Unite
About 500,000 pieces of fake clothing, shoes, watches, and fashion accessories seized from a warehouse in Pasay City last year were destroyed in Laguna on Friday.
Fake sandals and rubber shoes bearing the brand names of Adidas and Nike, watch, t-shirts, long sleeves, pants, jacket, slippers, and kid’s shoes were shredded and crushed in an accredited condemnation facility located at San Pedro, Laguna owned by Tritek Reverse Logistics Corporation.
The Bureau of Customs estimated the fake goods to be worth P50 million. The seized products were originally valued at P521.93 million based on the price of original versions of the goods. However, upon verification on the price of fake versions, the total amount of the goods downgraded to P50 million.
The fake goods, which came from China, were among those intercepted during a warehouse raid in December 2017 at 142 Cuneta Avenue in Pasay City by Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) and Enforcement and Security Service (ESS) agents.
The Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) infringing goods were seized on February 8 and consequently forfeited on July 16 by the Office of the District Collector of the Port of Manila.
According to Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapena, the owners failed to produce evidence of payment of duties and taxes and show evidence that the items were not fake, prompting the bureau to issue a warrant of seizure and detention.
The seized fake goods have violated Section 1113 (f) and (l) of the CMTA and Section 118(f) of the same Act, in relation to Section 166 of RA 8293 (Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines).
Under Section 1146 of the CMTA, all prohibited goods like counterfeit goods shall be destroyed.
“If these products successfully enter our market, it will affect legitimate businesses in the Philippines, that’s why we proceeded with its destruction. This is to show also that none of the seized items are recycled by the employees of the Bureau of Customs,” Lapena said.