The heavy penalties of a counterfeit goods trafficking conviction

Counterfeit goods comprise what one online overview of the subject matter terms a “major industry.”

Given the consumer focus of American economic life and the country’s vast buying market, the United States has unsurprisingly been a globally predominant locale for the sale and purchase of counterfeit goods.

An estimate of the sheer magnitude of profits realized through the sale of such goods can be gleaned from a relevant government statistic. Federal officials state that they seized close to $2 billion in counterfeit goods in a recent year. The above article duly notes that, notwithstanding that high amount, it relates to “just the goods that were discovered.”

Unsurprisingly, American law enforcers – both federal investigators and state task forces – take a dim view of individuals they suspect of trafficking in counterfeit goods or services. Their scrutiny in this singular legal area is especially acute in Texas, given the state’s lengthy border and logical placement as an entry point for counterfeits that compete with trademarked and closely protected products.

Counterfeit goods run a broad gamut. Although many people reasonably think of things like clothing, shoes, sunglasses and handbags, the counterfeit universe also embraces electronics, toys, pharmaceuticals, auto parts and many other offerings.

The penalties linked with an arrest for trafficking in counterfeit goods are, in a word, stringent. We stress on our website at the established Houston criminal defense law firm of Hilder & Associates that a convicted trafficker can spend years in prison and, additionally, be forced to pay significant money damages.

And then there’s this: A trafficker “may have received nothing and still be liable for massive restitution to the trademark holder.”

The stakes are notably high in any trafficking scenario. An individual facing criminal charges might reasonably want to contact a proven legal defense team without delay.