Domain names seized in crackdown on counterfeits
BUFFALO, N.Y. — More than 100 domain names were seized in an international crackdown on websites that sell counterfeit merchandise, federal authorities said on Monday, just in time for the biggest online shopping day of the year.
It was the third consecutive Cyber Monday that websites selling knockoff sports jerseys, DVDs, cologne and other goods were blocked. This year, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations coordinated the 132-site effort with Europol and several European police departments.
“This is not an American problem, it is a global one, and it is a fight we must win,” ICE Director John Morton said in a statement.
At a news conference in Buffalo, investigators displayed tables full of knockoff Buffalo Bills jerseys, cologne and baseball caps purportedly made by Buffalo-based New Era Cap Co., all of which they had ordered online from mostly legitimate-looking websites.
“Intellectual property theft is not a victimless crime,” said James Spero, special agent-in-charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Buffalo.
Agents worked with copyright holders to confirm that products purchased from the targeted websites were illegal.
Most of the counterfeit goods are produced in and shipped from China, authorities said.
The single person arrested in the case, Gary Hammer, was charged with trafficking in counterfeit goods, accused of producing and selling counterfeit Microsoft software on Craigslist.
Americans were expected to spend $1.5 billion on Cyber Monday.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.