$680K in fake championship rings seized at airport
More than half a million dollars worth of fake championship rings were seized in late April from a shipment sent through Detroit Metropolitan Airport, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
The 136 phony NHL, NFL and Major League Baseball rings with a street-value of $680,000 were discovered in a shipment off a flight from China, officials said. The rings mimicked names and logos of several teams, including the Dallas Cowboys, Pittsburgh Steelers, New York Giants, Oakland Raiders, New Orleans Saints, New York Jets, Chicago Blackhawks and Boston Red Sox.
“CBP continues to devote its efforts and resources to target, intercept and seize shipments of commodities that violate trade laws,” said Gary Calhoun, acting port director for the airport. “Through tireless efforts, CBP officers and import specialists conduct these operations to stop shipments containing counterfeit and pirated items.”
The multimillion dollar figure represents the rings’ worth if passed as authentic, according to CBP’s public information officer Kris Grogan.
The company identified as the receiver used a fictitious name and was previously involved in copyright and trademark violations. No arrests have been made yet in the case, Grogan said.
“Sometimes it’s very difficult to run those (fictitious names) down. We do look into it to see if we can link it up, but it’s a case-by-case situation,” Grogan said. “We work with Homeland Security Investigations a lot of times as well on these types of cases.”
The rings are being held as evidence during the investigation, Grogan added.