U.S. Customs and Border Protection) officers in Cincinnati ay they intercepted 56 shipments of counterfeit championship rings in the last three months of 2021, with many containing matching trophies.
A total of 1,382 rings and trophies were seized. The rings, “which lack detail and quality” according to the CBP, included Boston Red Sox World Series, LA Dodgers, Milwaukee Bucks, University of Kentucky and NASCAR championship rings. Some shipments contained replica trophies such as the Vince Lombardi trophy to go along with the ring sets. The shipments originated from China and were destined to residences throughout the United States.
Collectors who are fans of championship teams often order the cheaply made rings, which are knockoffs of the actual ones ordered by the teams, most knowing full well what they’re getting. Unless the manufacturers have licenses to use the team and league logos and trademarks, though, they’re in violation of intellectual property rights and illegal to sell.
The CBP has announced numerous seizures of foreign made title rings over the past several years.
“Part of CBP’s mission is to protect American consumers from purchasing these counterfeit products,” said LaFonda D. Sutton-Burke, Director Field Operations-Chicago. “This seizure illustrates our commitment to stopping counterfeit products from China and protecting our nation’s economy and consumers from those intent on defrauding businesses and consumers alike.”
In partnership with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, CBP says it seized 26,503 shipments with IPR violations in fiscal year 2020.
Over the past five years, CPB officials say they’re seeing increases in such items being sold online, with the items typically shipped through international mail and express courier services.