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Police Net 16 in Huge Counterfeiting Operation

Maple Shade Police arrested 16 flea market vendors who were found with more than $1 million in knockoff products.

Maple Shade Police caught 16 flea market vendors who were allegedly found with more than $1 million in counterfeit merchandise this weekend.

Police said the individuals had been peddling the knockoff products—including popular brands like Polo Ralph Lauren, Nike, Adidas, Timberland, UGG and Gucci—at the Tacony-Palmyra Flea Market in Palmyra over the weekend. They were caught, and the merchandise seized, when they arrived in trucks at the Mini-U Storage in Maple Shade on Sunday, according to a report.

Counterfeiters do not pay taxes, meaning less money for schools, parks, fire and police departments and other social programs, the report from Maple Shade Police stated. Stuart Drobny, of Stumar Investigations, whose agents assisted in the investigation, said “counterfeiting not only deceives the consumer but also harms the economy.”

Maple Shade Police carried out the investigation in coordination with the Palmyra Police Department, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations and the FBI.

All sixteen suspects were charged with criminal simulation and violation of the NJ trademark-counterfeiting act. All were released pending future court proceedings:

Abdallah Balaghi, 41, Astoria, NY
Imad Chahine, 49, Astoria, NY
Hassan Darwich, 58, Jersey City, NJ
Ali Hijazi, 32, Guttenberg, NJ
Iyad Jouni, 39, Astoria, NY
Afif Kaddouh, 59, Astoria, NY
Chadi Kassir, 38, Maspeth, NY
Mohamad Kassir, 31, Astoria, NY
Wissam Kassir, 32, Maspeth, NY
Nader Kassir, 31, Maspeth, NY
Hussein Ismail, 39, Kent, WA
Ibrahim Ismail, 44, Elmhurst, NY
Hussein Reda, 60, Sunnyside, NY
Hani Anzola, 38, Elmhurst, NY
Abedalilah Elreda, 37, West New York, NJ
Mahamadou Ndiaye, 25, Harlem, NY

Learn more about the effects of counterfeiting and piracy on the U.S. economy at http://www.stopfakes.gov and http://www.iacc.org.

Jeff G November 28, 2012 at 08:11 PM
"Counterfeiters do not pay taxes"? How do you know? Did the police check their 2011 income tax returns before they arrested them? And if they had copies of their taxes with them would they have not been arrested? Is their merchandise really counerfeit? Or is it an homage to the "real" stuff? Does anyone, when they buy a Gucci bag at the Tacony-Palmyra Flea Market for 1/10th of its value, really believe that its real? Or are they just tired of only being able to afford Walmart stuff? If people want to buy fakes, let them. Its fun being able to buy a fake Rolex without having to go all the way to China to do it.
flavio veneziano December 03, 2012 at 02:06 AM
counterfeit merchandise , should not be a problem for the state unless there is a claim for copy right from the owner of the brand , thats number one , secondly the consumer can claim damage after being deceived or cheated that means if the seller sell his counterfeit products as original then there is consumer harm, but if the customer willingly buying these products because he cannot afford to buy the real one and he is happy then the state should dismiss this case and release the people .

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