In June 2011, TM EYE took the decision to prosecute a number of suspects in the criminal courts by way of private criminal prosecutions. Since that date TM EYE has privately prosecuted over 40 (forty) similar criminal cases for offences against the Trademarks Act 1994 and other related criminal legislation. Fifty two persons have appeared at court.
In all cases the defendants have been found guilty of criminal offences. There has been only one trial to date which again resulted in a conviction. There are 7 (seven) cases in the criminal court system at present.
There is NO COST to the client for any operational activity, intelligence gathering or prosecution costs.
These private criminal prosecutions have been successful due to the overwhelming evidence that is obtained by TM EYE detectives of ‘crimes in action’. TM EYE detectives are retired police detectives or Trading Standards officers with a wealth of experience in covert policing. Tactics used to tackle organised crime are being brought to the fight against the trade in fake goods.
Some convictions have resulted in significant prison sentences of up to four years.
Significant seizures of counterfeit goods valued at many millions of pounds have been made.
In most cases the convicted criminal(s) cease to trade or stop trading in brands that are protected by TM EYE. TM EYE has identified repeat offenders and prosecuted for repeat offences. Two such cases are currently in the court system.
With Government cut backs and reduced resources the use of private criminal prosecutions has been a useful tactic and option to reduce offending and bring those engaged in this criminality to justice in the criminal courts.
TM EYE always works closely with local Trading Standards and police. Intelligence is shared with both as well as the IPO intelligence hub. Co ordinated action is always undertaken with the support and knowledge of the National Markets Group as part of the REAL DEAL campaign.
Criminal action to date has been taken against traders in fake goods at the following markets:
BOVINGDON MARKET, HERTFORDSHIRE.
WEMBLEY MARKET, BRENT, LONDON.
BRISTOL FRUIT MARKET, BRISTOL.
WELLESBOURNE MARKET, WARWICKSHIRE.
DAGENHAM MARKET, DAGENHAM, LONDON
CAMDEN MARKET, CAMDEN, LONDON.
KEMPTON PARK MARKET, SURREY.
Other prolific markets have now been identified for action.
TM EYE continues weekly to monitor prolific markets selling fake goods across the UK. We gather evidence of criminality and prosecute those engaged in damaging our clients brands. TM EYE supplies quality intelligence to the IPO intelligence hub and the team have built a significant intelligence profile of the problematic markets and the criminals engaged in selling fake goods.
The following is a list of TM EYE clients who have supported private criminal prosecutions:
THOMAS SABO JEWELLERY.
RICHEMONT BRANDS INCLUDING:
LINKS OF LONDON.
TM EYE now works in partnership with the FEDERATION AGAINST COPYRIGHT THEFT (FACT) to prosecute criminals who engage in the sale of copied films and media.
TM EYE will continue to prosecute in the criminal courts any persons engaged in the sale of fake goods that impact on our clients brands.