TRAP seizes £10m of counterfeit goods

TRAP seizes £10m of counterfeit goods

Body has also had over 100,000 listings removed from Amazon.

A group of rights holders and merchandisers are upping the ante in their campaign to stop the selling of unofficial product – and has already seized over £10 million of counterfeit licensed goods.

Traders and Rights Holders Against Piracy (TRAP) is a worldwide collective of rights holders and publishers working with the biggest names in music, film, TV, art and sport. Through lobbying and direct action, TRAP is aiming to protect the public from buying counterfeit products, while enabling musicians, artists, actors and athletes to provide fans with official merchandise.

Members include Bravado, CID, Danilo, GB eye, Firebrand, Global Merchandising Services, Live Nation, Pyramid, Rock Off and Sandbag, while the organisation also has links with global investigators and security consultants to ensure it can carry out undercover surveillance to identify and destroy bootleg product.

So far, working with industry experts and local authorities, TRAP has been responsible for assisting in the seizure of over £10 million worth of counterfeit goods, with offenders convicted and receiving prison sentences.

The body also has a dedicated online team removing illegal product from website and has notched up some significant results. It has had 100,000+ listings removed from Amazon, 50,000+ from eBay, 20,000+ from Etsy and 5,000+ from Redbubble.

“Bootleg and unofficial merchandise is a serious issue that affects all rights holders, official merchandisers and the artists themselves,” said TRAP spokesperson, Alex Mitchell. “These acts have worked hard to establish themselves as part of popular culture and for someone to produce merchandise without permission not only takes away a key financial income but also creative control. There are wider implications as manufacturing is often not regulated and income on the money involved not accounted for in the appropriate way. TRAP looks to stop this.

Alex continued: “TRAP has come together to take a stand against bootleg and unofficial product. Its members are in some instances competitors but with the common goal of eradicating, or at least reducing, the bootleg market. This joint effort is a non-profit organisation and over the last year TRAP has made real strides in effectively limiting the numbers of unofficial product in both physical retail and online with bigger plans and results expected over the next 12 months.

“TRAP has been involved in removing millions of pounds of product from the market and the resulting cases have seen sizable fines and even prison sentences ordered by judges across the UK.”

By Samantha Loveday
October 2, 2015