'Tis The Season For Cheap (Fake) Sunglasses In L.A.

Notice a lot of high-end Italian sunglasses out there perched nicely on the noggins of people who don't have the rest of the couture ensemble to match? Us too. Let us be so presumptuous to suggest that at least some of these designer light-ray filters are ... fake.

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) statement this week might confirm that suspicion: Six shipments of counterfeit sunglasses from China with retail prices that combine to equal nearly $19 million have been seized at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach in the last four weeks. The labels represented include some top designers:

Versace, Louis Vuitton, Dolce & Gabbana, Lacoste, Coach, Emporio Armani and Bulgari were some of the labels attached to the 156,000 pairs of fake shades seized in inspections of six different shipments through mid-April, CBP officials said.

"Stopping the importation of counterfeit and pirated merchandise continues to be a top priority for CBP," said Christopher Perry, CBP acting director of Field Operations, Los Angeles. "These seizures are fine examples of the hard work the men and women of CBP perform to protect the American consumer and the economic vitality of our country."

Authorities warn that, besides being cheesy, fake sunglasses might not offer the save ultraviolet-ray protection as the real deal.


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