Times up!: U.S. Border agents seize fake Rolex watches worth $500K

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Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Jun. 12 2021, Published 10:47 a.m. ET

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Time to bust the counterfeiters!

U.S. Customs and Border agents seized nearly $500,000 in fake Rolex watches in a shipment stopped in Louisville, Kentucky, according to the agency.

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The package came from Hong Kong and contained 20 watches. If they were real, federal officials said, they would have been valued at $491,000. The package had a declared value of $100.

The watches were heading to a home in Miami, according to federal agents. Officials inspected the package to see if it met federal regulations, which is when they discovered the watches. The watches all had Rolex trademarks.

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Fake watches and jewelry are one of the most seized items by border agents, the agency noted, with an average of $650 million seized in each of the last two years. Counterfeiting and piracy cost the economy between $200 and $250 billion per year, according to federal officials.

“Consumers should be aware that if a known high-value brand is being offered for an unusually low price, it could very well be fake. CBP encourages the use of reputable vendors for your valuable purchases,” Thomas Mahn, Louisville Port director, said in announcing the seizure. “Our officers are dedicated to preventing counterfeiters from defrauding consumers and legitimate businesses.”

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