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Counterfeit Trademarks Enforcement

What we do

We help protect businesses and consumers by enforcing the counterfeit trademark laws in North Carolina. Why are trademarks protected by criminal laws?
Counterfeiting trademarked goods is a crime because selling goods under someone else’s brand is:

  • Crime of fraud on the buyer/consumer
  • Crime of theft from mark holder and
  • Undermines legitimate business and economy
    • Counterfeiters aren’t paying taxes
    • Counterfeiters don’t care about safety

How do we do protect trademarks?
Our agency has sworn law enforcement officers that investigate counterfeit trademark crimes statewide. Critical to our success is the taskforce model we developed as a force multiplier. Our agency works with Homeland Security Investigations and other federal agencies on a regular basis to work cooperatively. The agency has received five (5) federal grants from the Bureau of Justice Assistance (USDOJ) since 2009 to support the work of combating fakes in North Carolina.

What is being counterfeited? Gone are the days when only luxury brands of watches, shoes and clothing were being counterfeited. Now, the counterfeiters are knocking off anything that they can turn a profit by selling. Here are recent examples of the counterfeit goods that have been seized in North Carolina:

  • Batteries
  • Electrical cords
  • Medicines
  • Airbags
  • Perfume
  • Cosmetics
  • Laundry detergent
  • Headphones
  • Ear buds
  • Toothpaste
  • CDs and DVDs
  • Beverages
  • Video games
  • Clothing
  • Jewelry
  • Toys
  • Sunglasses

These items can be hazardous to your health and safety – shop smart and don’t buy fakes!

  • Civil enforcement actions
  • Internal business disputes over control or ownership of TMs
  • Infringement cases
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