Firm guilty of using brands like Land Rover and Ford on eBay items without permission
- Credit: PA
A Suffolk company and its director have admitted selling copyrighted items online without permission of brands like Land Rover, Ford and Warner Bros.
Sticar-it Ltd and its director, Christopher Taylor, 42, of Lidgate Court, Felixstowe, pleaded guilty to 15 counts of Trade Marks Act violations and five counts against the Copyright Designs and Patents Act at Ipswich Crown Court.
Trading Standards officers investigated after receiving information that Sticar-it was selling copyrighted items via eBay without the permission of the license holder.
The firm offers services including printing services and merchandise such as stickers, phone cases and clothing.
Following test purchases from the Form-Felixstowe eBay account, 116 exhibits, containing more 10,000 items, were seized from an address in Bridge Road, Felixstowe. Trademarks included Land Rover, Ford Motor Company and Tweety Bird, the animated canary in the Warner Bros’ Looney Tunes series.
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A sentencing hearing is scheduled for December 15, when a confiscation order will be made under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
Sarah Stamp, Suffolk County Council’s head of communities, said: “One of the aims of Trading Standards is to protect consumers from the sale of counterfeit goods. If you buy fake items you run the risk of paying a high price for goods which do not meet the quality and standards of the original brand holder. Counterfeit goods also adversely affect the livelihood of honest and reputable dealers.
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“Although the crime of counterfeiting is not new, the sale of fake goods is increasing and there are simple steps that you can take to avoid mishaps whilst buying online. Ideally, try to buy from known companies, that you have done business with before, companies that have been recommended to you or companies that have a physical address in case you need to contact them if your order goes wrong.”