We'll give you a peek into our last-minute Christmas shopping list: Fake True Religion jeans. Lots of them. (Note to self: Check Craigslist).
Dang it: Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) today announced it has seized $4 million worth of Chinese-made counterfeit crap, including fake True Religion jeans, found en route to our ports and in a Santa Fe Springs warehouse.
Now we're going to have to pay full price for the real thing? The crackdown, of course, came just in time …
… for the holidays.
According to an ICE statement the bulk of the fake stuff was nabbed Dec. 1 …
… when officers assigned to CBP's Merchandise Enforcement Team (MET) intercepted a 40-foot shipping container in-bound from China filled with 966 cartons of counterfeit apparel. The merchandise included more than 15,000 items bearing the True Religion Jeans brand, along with clothing from The North Face and Gucci.
Agents say that, if it was genuine, the haul would have been worth $3.6 million. As it was? $1.50. (We kid).
Then, on Dec. 13, an investigation into a “smuggling scheme” led feds to a warehouse in beautiful Santa Fe Springs, they say, where they found 246 cartons of fake Nikes that would have been worth $430,000 if they were real.
Investigations into both seizures continue, ICE officials say.
The take downs were, of course, part of Operation Holiday Hoax, which “targeted stores, flea markets and swap meets” — e.g., places where Mexicans shop for the holidays.
Thanks ICE. We'll enjoy paying $100 for those genuine made-in-China Nikes (versus the fake made-in-China Nikes). Not.