Dodgy dealer spared jail
IPSWICH: A dodgy dealer who made �200,000 selling counterfeit goods over the internet is serving a suspended jail sentence today.
Chee Nam Chow was snared by trading standards officers from Suffolk County Council after a host of brand-name goods were sold on the auction site Ebay.
The 32-year-old admitted 10 offences relating to selling or offering goods bearing false trademarks, when he appeared before Ipswich magistrates.
The items included Nike trainers, a Hannah Montana colouring book, a High School Musical wallet, a Burberry scarf, a Prada coat and other counterfeit clothing and stationery.
Chow also pleaded guilty to a safety offence relating to chargers and one count of money laundering.
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Magistrates gave him a 12-week prison sentence suspended for a year and ordered Chow to do 240 hours community service. He must also pay �1,000 prosecution costs.
Chow was caught after Nike International UK Ltd bought a pair of Nike trainers from Ebay and wrote to the seller in Ipswich, telling them to stop offering counterfeit goods.
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Nike then informed Suffolk County Council trading standards officers in May 2008.
However, they were unable to make any purchases themselves as the seller stopped selling the goods under that account.
Colleagues in Thurrock were informed of someone in their area working the same scam. They bought some fake Nike trainers and then raided a premises where they seized counterfeit footwear and clothing.
Trading standards officers in Suffolk also executed a warrant and confiscated counterfeit goods, including unsafe chargers.
Chow was interviewed about the scam and subsequently charged.
Ebay/Paypal records indicate Chow, of London Road, Grays, Essex, received nearly �200,000 over a period of time, paid into various accounts using multiple Ebay IDs.
After the case Eleanor Lake, fair trading officer for SCC, said: “A number of officers worked very hard to secure a successful prosecution against Mr Chow. He was importing these goods and using multiple names on internet auction sites to sell the items.
“This case sends a stark warning to members of the public that they need to be careful when buying items online.
“This is a great result for the team and shows Suffolk Trading Standards take these issues very seriously.”
All the goods seized have been confiscated by the courts and will be destroyed.
<n> Have you been duped into buying counterfeit goods? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or write to Star Letters, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN.