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U.S. Customs and Border Protection and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations recently announced the results of ongoing efforts to protect America from the trade of counterfeit and pirated goods during fiscal year 2012.
According to the joint annual Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Fiscal Year 2012 Seizure Statistics Report, CBP and ICE agents seized 22,848 shipments of infringing goods and 697 websites involved in the trafficking of these goods. The MSRP of seized goods increased from $1.11 billion in FY 2011 to $1.26 billion in FY 2012, with an average seizure value of more than $10,450.
Additionally, new enforcements efforts were implemented in 2012. The National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center’s Operation Chain Reaction was launched to prevent counterfeit items from entering U.S. government supply chains. To date, Operation Chain Reaction has resulted in 24 arrests, 36 indictments, 26 convictions and the seizure of more than $9.83 million in counterfeit electronics, currency and vehicle parts.
“Attacking criminal activity at every point along the international supply chain, to include websites, manufacturers, shippers and shipping routes, border entry points, distribution networks and payment methods, is critical to CBP and HSI’s enforcement efforts,” said Lev Kubiak, director of the National Intellectual Property Rights Center.