Super Bowl XLVI - Feds seize more Super Bowl items - Ingles

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials will continue their crackdown on counterfeit NFL Super Bowl merchandise being sold in New England and across the country through early next week.

Operation Fake Sweep, which started Oct. 1, already has netted more than 42,692 phony Super Bowl-related items valued at $4.8 million and resulted in the seizure of 307 websites.

The investigation is targeting stores, flea markets, street vendors and illegal imports coming into the country, including through mail facilities. The confiscated counterfeit, trademarked merchandise has included fake jerseys, ball caps, T-shirts, jackets and other souvenirs.

“We inspect to see increased seizures nationwide over the weekend as we get closer to Super Bowl Sunday, especially in Indianapolis, New York and ... New England,” ICE spokesman Ross Feinstein said.

To date, 223 items worth $40,500 have been confiscated in New England, but ICE refused to say where.

“We’re still continuing to investigate the locations where we made those seizures,” Feinstein said.

Of the websites seized, 291 were selling counterfeit products and 16 were streaming live, copyrighted sporting events over the Internet, including NFL games. Seized sites included nine trying to capitalize on the New England Patriots [team stats] name, including and

ICE advises shoppers to purchase NFL merchandise only from known, reputable companies. They should be suspicious if they see terms such “replica,” “knockoff” and “cheap” in a website’s name or advertising; prices too good to be true; and inaccurate grammar, misspellings and punctuation, the agency said. Consumers also should be wary if a website’s “frequently asked questions” section explains the policies for Customs’ seizures or does not provide contact information.

(source Boston Herald)

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