About the Alliance

Alliance Backs Trading Standards 'Get Real' Campaign
21 October 2004

FAKES, COPIES AND COUNTERFEITING THREAT TO CONSUMERS

With National Consumer Week underway, the Alliance Against Counterfeiting & Piracy today backed the ‘Get Real’ campaign to alert consumers to the dangers of fake goods and outlined proposals to tackle the criminal gangs that are defrauding and threatening consumers.

Lavinia Carey, chair of the cross-industry Alliance said:

“We welcome this push by the Trading Standards Institute to raise awareness of the dangers of counterfeiting and we call on the Government to take urgent action to protect the public from conmen and criminals.”

Occasional and car boot sales are often hot beds for the sale of fake goods and the Alliance has issued proposals to change the law to crack down on the sale of counterfeit goods at local markets and car boot sales. A survey at this summer’s Local Government Association Conference found that nine out of ten local councillors and officials support the introduction of national legislation to regulate local markets better.

A package of legislative reform is being proposed which will address this growing problem and protect consumers from potentially dangerous goods.
Many Trading Standards Offices do not have sufficient funding to mount prosecutions and the Alliance’s proposals include a plan to enable Trading Standards Officers to recover the costs of prosecution of these offences.

“The trade in counterfeit and pirated goods is increasing and people are putting themselves at risk by buying fake toys, electrical goods and even counterfeit vodka, quite often with tragic consequences.”

“Too many people are duped into paying out across a market stall in the mistaken belief that counterfeiting is a victimless crime. We know that many of the perpetrators are also involved in benefit fraud and Triad gangs, the Russian mafia and Northern Irish paramilitaries are among the organised criminals behind some of the worst cases of the UK’s £11 billion trade in fake goods. It is clear a strong, effective regulatory regime is crucial to cut off the opportunities for criminals to con the public,” Lavinia said.

For information about joining the Alliance please contact
Susie Winter at susie@allianceagainstiptheft.co.uk
or on 020 7534 0595