ICE confiscates fake items in Houlton

12 years ago

HOULTON, Maine — Law enforcement officials from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) confiscated more than 400 counterfeit items, including knock-off designer purses, in Houlton during the July 4 holiday.
    According to Ross Feinstein, spokesperson for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Boston branch, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents made two seizures of counterfeit goods at two locations in Houlton. The two locations were a vendor’s booth at Houlton Community Park and a craft fair table set up at Houlton Community Park.
HSI special agents seized more than 400 counterfeit items with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of more than $121,000.
The names of the two individuals who had items seized were not revealed, as they have not been charged with any crime as of presstime.
“Obviously trafficking in counterfeit goods is a federal crime, but we do make administrative seizures (without arrest),” he said. “We make seizures on a regular basis throughout New England and the country. If an individual believes that we have taken items that are legitimate, they are more than welcome to go through the forfeiture process with the court to have those items returned.”
The HSI directorate is a critical asset in the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) mission, responsible for investigating a wide range of domestic and international activities arising from the illegal movement of people and goods into, within and out of the United States,” said Feinstein. “The HSI-led National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center (IPR Center) is one of the U.S. government’s key weapons in the fight against criminal counterfeiting and piracy. The IPR Center uses the expertise of its 21 member agencies to share information, develop initiatives, coordinate enforcement actions, and conduct investigations related to IP theft. Through this strategic interagency partnership, the IPR Center protects the public’s health and safety, the U.S. economy and the war fighters.”
The International AntiCounterfeiting Coalition estimates that counterfeiting costs U.S. businesses between $200 and $500 billion each year and more than 750,000 American jobs.
The public can report intellectual property theft online at