Authorities seize 132 domain names selling fake Nike, other counterfeit merchandise
U.S. and international law enforcement, including U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations, announced they have seized 132 domain names that were illegally selling counterfeit merchandise online to unsuspecting consumers.
The websites were set up to dupe consumers into unknowingly buying counterfeit goods as part of the holiday shopping season.
"This operation is a great example of the tremendous cooperation between ICE and our international partners at the IPR Center," said ICE Director John Morton. "Our partnerships enable us to go after criminals who are duping unsuspecting shoppers all over the world. This is not an American problem, it is a global one and it is a fight we must win."
The domain names seized are now in the custody of the governments involved in these operations. Visitors typing those domain names into their Web browsers will now find a banner that notifies them of the seizure and educates them about the federal crime of willful copyright infringement.
In addition to the domain name seizures, officials identified PayPal accounts utilized by the infringing websites. Proceeds received through the identified PayPal accounts, in excess of $175,000, are currently being targeted for seizure.
During this operation, federal law enforcement officers made undercover purchases of a host of products; including professional sports jerseys, DVD sets, and a variety of clothing, jewelry and luxury goods from online retailers who were suspected of selling counterfeit products.