Fake currency mastermind caught in Prakasam district, Andhra Pradesh

Recently, Police nabbed a government employee from his residence in Chirala town or Prakasam for allegedly printing and circulating counterfeit notes.

The accused has been identified as David Raju who is a junior assistant at Chirala RTC depot. Recently two vendors were arrested for possessing fake currency with a value of around Rs 3 lakhs. However, cops said that they did not print the cash and were only circulating them.

After further investigation, they revealed that they did not print the cash and were only circulating them. Based on the information provided by the two it was found that Raju was behind the whole racket. Fake currency worth Rs 13 lakh was confiscated from Raju with the equipment used for printing.

Raju was mostly printing notes of Rs 100 or Rs 50 and slipped the notes between the two original notes so as to avoid suspicion. Later he sold fake currency worth Rs 3 lakh for Rs 30,000. As per officials, Raju has been sent to judicial custody.

Source: TOI

Man prints fake currency with the help of YouTube tutorial

Inspired by a YouTube tutorial on printing fake Indian currency, a man named Ravi Sandhu printed fake notes in the denominations of Rs 2000, Rs 500 and Rs 200.

He first started to circulate them in interiors of Punjab, but after an action by the police, he shifted his base to Delhi. He used to circulate fake currency at weekly markets and liquor shops. Police have confiscated his set-up and fake notes, with a total value of Rs 1.38 lakh. Sandhu confessed, that till date, he has printed fake notes with a total value of Rs 10 lakh

He also revealed that the Punjab Police had earlier arrested him in connection with the fake current racket. After coming to Delhi, he had become more careful in his activities and would change his hideout every three months to avoid being caught. DCP Monika Bhardwaj said that an FIR has been registered against Sandhu for printing fake currency and, the case is still ongoing to know if Sandhu had any accomplices.

The accused would download pictures of the notes and then take printouts on normal paper. The notes were cut with precision, crumpled and were kept in damp places to make them look original.

The fake currency racket was busted when police got a tip-off about his activities in a weekly market. A police team comprising of a Sub Inspector and others were formed and traps were laid at different places. Sandhu was caught when he reached a shop with the fake notes.

A senior officer said that they seized 64 fake currency notes in the denomination of Rs 2000, 17 notes of Rs 500 and eight notes of Rs 200. If you analyse carefully you can easily identify the difference in the quality of the note, paper and thread when compared to original currency notes.

Source: TOI

 

Hooch tragedy in Barabanki claims 16 lives

After the ill-fated death of 16 people in Barabanki, UP due to the consumption of spurious liquor the Uttar Pradesh police have arrested three people whereas the UP Government has announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh each for the deceased. Until now, the police have arrested three people and a salesman who was involved in the sale of spurious country made liquor however, the search of the owner is still underway.

Moreover, the police officials are also conducting raids at different locations to confiscate more stock of similar liquor brands which led to the death of consumers. Meanwhile, the State Government has formed a three-member committee headed by Uttar Pradesh Excise Commissioner to further investigate the matter. The committee has to submit its report within 48 hours to the State Government.

As of now, the district administration has suspended District Excise Officer, Excise Inspector, Ramnagar Circle Officer, and Station House Officer have been suspended with immediate effect. Among the deceased include four members of the same family. Most of the victims belong to Raniganj village in the Ramnagar region of Barabanki district.

Source: First Post

Delhi HC orders apparel firm to stop selling fake Under Armour products

Under Armour, the athletic apparel, footwear, and accessories brand got relief from the Delhi High Court in the counterfeit court case brought against a Ludhiana based apparel firm for production and sale of duplicate Under Armour products.

Recently the Delhi HC ordered a Ludhiana based apparel firm to stop selling counterfeit Under Armour products. Under Armour is a globally renowned brand which manufactures athletic apparels, footwear and accessories. The brand got relief from the order as the offender was asked to maintain status quo on title, possession and construction thereof until further orders.

The Delhi High Court passed judgement against the counterfeit manufacturer Amit Apparels in Ludhiana which was operating a large factory to manufacture fake versions of Under Armour, Jordan and Lacoste. In the month of January, Under Armour had filed a civil suit for injunction and damages of Rs 2 crore before Delhi High court against fake products by Amit Apparels. Earlier an FIR was registered against the said manufacturer in Ludhiana under FIR No.308.

Under Armour Inc. is headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland is a marketer and distributor of branded performance athletic apparel, footwear and accessories.

Source: Economic Times

Health Ministry preparing a draft to counter USTR report

The Indian Health Ministry is preparing a draft to refute US trade representatives (USTR) report that accuses India as one of the main sources of fake medicines across the globe. Arun Singhal, Additional Secretary Health Ministry has dismissed the report and has termed that the Ministry is in the process of preparing a draft to counter USTR report which mentions that India is a global supplier of fake drugs.

The USTR report claims that India and China are the leading hubs for the supply of counterfeit medicines globally. The report states, “While it may not be possible to determine an exact figure, studies have suggested that up to 20% of the drugs sold in the Indian market are counterfeit and could represent a serious threat to patient health and safety.”

Surprisingly, the report is in complete contrast to the government’s own report of 2016 which states that only 3% of the drugs are not of standard quality and 0.0245% are spurious drugs. According to S Eswara Reddy, Drug Controller General of India, “The claim made by USTR tarnishes the image of India which is one of the leading global producers of low-cost generic medicines and hence it’s important to get documentary evidence from them that they used to support their claim.” Leena Menghaney South Asia head of the Access campaign by Médecins Sans Frontières also supports India’s point and says, “MSF supports the health Ministry’s position that the USTR report is a scathing attack on India’s capability of manufacturing large scale affordable generic drugs.”

Source: Live Mint

Hindustan Unilever takes a tough stance against counterfeiting

One of India’s biggest pure-play consumer goods firm Hindustan Unilever has on an average filed two cases of intellectual property rights and trademarks violations -weekly in FY19. This is considered to be the company’s tough stance against fake products that use identical logos or packaging.

With more than 90 such cases during March, HUL’s latest number is about eight times more than the cases in 2018 and twice the preceding two years combined. Most of the cases were filed in the Bombay High Court. The manufacturers of Dove soap and Lipton tea said that a higher number of such cases are a reflection of duplication that has grown over the past few years.

Dev Bajpai, Executive Director, Legal & Corporate Affairs HUL says, “We have shifted our focus on actions resulting in value impact and started directing our efforts more on curtailing counterfeits at manufacturing and filling points than on the retail trade alone. This has resulted in curbing counterfeit trade at the source.”

In March, HUL filed a case against Mahadev Soap in Bombay High court. The company based in Bardoli; Surat was involved in alleged trademark violation. HUL claimed that the company’s washing powder brand ‘Go-Win’ had an identical packaging to its highly popular washing powder brand ‘Wheel’. Similarly, HUL took action against Navi-Mumbai based Glint Cosmetics which was manufacturing brands like ‘Fasaline’ and ‘Fair & Life’ identical to HUL’s famous brands ‘Vaseline’ and ‘Fair & Lovely.’

Source: Economic Times

Instagram becomes a breeding ground for fake fashion products

According to the analytics firm Ghost Data Instagram has become a breeding ground for the sale and purchase of knockoff fashion products. This includes counterfeit Chanel bags to fake Gucci slides and duplicate Adidas tracksuits. As per a study published in April, around 20% of the Instagram posts on fashion products are about fake products.

The report has identified more than 50,000 accounts involved in the sale of fake products which has increased by 171% from 20,000 accounts in the year 2016. These counterfeit fashion accounts majorly include the knock offs of luxury fashion products.  The accounts have added more than 65 million posts on Instagram and their activity averages to 1.6 million Instagram stories in a month.

The overall business of counterfeit industry is a whopping $1.2 trillion annually. The online counterfeit market has caught the attention of the US government and authorities like the Department of Homeland security and Commerce and other authorities which will be involved in fighting the sale of fakes.

According to Ghost Data, some of the most counterfeited brand items on Instagram are Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Chanel, Nike, Fendi and Balenciaga.  The sale of such knock-offs not just affects the brand’s profit but also adds to other illegal activities.

Source: Vox.com

Drug technical advisory board recommends mandatory QR coding on API labels

In order to ensure the quality of drugs and check the sale of fake drugs in the market, the DTAB (Drugs Technical Advisory Board) has recommended mandatory QR coding on labels of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API). The QR codes will help in tracing the origin and movement of APIs from manufacturers to formulators through a networking system.

DTAB in a recent meeting noted that the security and integrity of API in proper storage condition played a very important role in maintaining its quality in the supply chain. The board also added that the stakeholders had suggested for implementing QR coding on APIs for tracing the origin and movement of drug ingredients.

While speaking on the development, a senior Health Ministry official said that the DTAB after detailed deliberation has recommended to include mandatory provisions under the Drug and Cosmetics Rules 1945. Other officials from the Health Ministry confirmed the numerous benefits of QR coding on API which included better price control and quality control.

APIs are the active raw materials used in the medicines to give them their therapeutic effect. A large share of APIs are being procured from other countries but the Health Ministry envisions to become self-reliant. Earlier, FICCI has also said that the reliance on other countries for API exposes India to disruptions in supply chain and pricing volatility.

Recently, the Supreme Court had directed the Central Govt. to develop a system that would benefit consumers by controlling the prices of drugs. The Health Ministry says that it has been working on introducing the QR coding for medicine packaging which can then be linked to a software supervised by NPPA (National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority).

Source: The Hindu

Major clamp down on fake shirts, shoes and watches

In a recent development bureau of customs destroyed fake shoes, six Rolex wristwatches and soaps having a total value of PHP 1.80 million. The incident took place in Camp Crame, Quezon City in the Philippines. The clampdown and destruction of fake goods marked the celebration of National Intellectual Property Rights Month.

As per the statement issued by the customs officials, the counterfeit products seized and destroyed from various areas were a result of ongoing efforts to secure the country’s border from counterfeit and pirated goods. Among the many confiscated fake products, six counterfeit Rolex watches came from Thailand. The items were found inside the luggage of a passenger caught in the X-ray images.

The assorted counterfeit shoes and soaps came from the operation conducted by operatives from the intellectual property rights division a part of the intelligence group. Some other items destroyed in the anti-counterfeiting operation were fake cigarettes, bags, wallets, phone accessories, shirts, belts, CDs among others.

The import of fake goods is restricted under Republic Act No. 8293 known as the ‘Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines. Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero vowed to secure the country’s border and protect local buyers against counterfeit products.

Source: canadianinquirer.net

Apple suffers from monetary loss due to fake iPhones

The global tech giant, Apple was recently scammed by a couple of students and the repercussions have turned out to be quite serious for the tech major. According to media reports two Chinese students at Oregon State University and Linn Benton Community college were involved in the import of smartphones from Hong Kong which were in fact counterfeits.

They tricked Apple by sending back the faulty counterfeits. In return, Apple sent them brand new legitimate iPhone as a part of its warranty process. Each of the new phones were shipped overseas for healthy profits. Since 2017, the scamsters had duped Apple with an amount of the value $895,800.

Surprisingly, Apple allowed fake iPhones to be replaced so easily. Employees at Apple were just following normal procedure and were assuming they were being given faulty handsets to process.

In total, Apple allowed 1,493 counterfeit iPhones to be exchanged with brand new ones however in total they attempted to exchange 3,069 sets. Eventually, Apple realized and sent a cease and desist order to the address where the culprits lived, but it was ignored.

The offenders are now facing charges of illegal trafficking of counterfeit goods, fraud and illegal exporting. However, both of the culprits are denying that they have sent counterfeit phones to Apple.

Source: in.pcmag.com