Christmas shoppers warned after counterfeits seized

11 December 2015

Border Force officers are warning festive shoppers against buying counterfeit goods this Christmas after seizing thousands of fakes at the UK’s ports, airports and postal hubs.

In the financial year 2014-15 Border Force detained over 1.6 million Intellectual Property (IP) infringing goods with a genuine retail value of £56 million. Items include thousands of imitation designer handbags, clothes, jewellery, children’s toys and electrical goods which were destined for sale in the UK in the run-up to Christmas.

Once counterfeit items are detained, Border Force’s specialist international trade teams work with the owners of big brands to establish whether or not goods are genuine. If they are fake the goods are destroyed and the rights holders can then decide whether to privately prosecute the importers.

Border Force is urging consumers to be careful with their purchases. If the price appears too good to be true – either at a car boot sale, a market stall or online – it probably is.

Read the full news report for examples of recent detections made by Border Force and who to contact if sold counterfeit goods.


The new Consumer Rights Act 2015 came into force on 1st October 2015 and is intended to provide shoppers with greater protection than they had previously. Citizens Advice has a useful overview and Q & A on the Act on their website.