DUBLIN: A growing proportion of the counterfeit items is being bought online and detected at either postal depots or through controlled deliveries to customers. But large shipments are also being intercepted at ports and airports.
The increasingly lucrative trade in counterfeit goods is reckoned to be costing the economy about €1.2b a year. And the profits to be made have attracted the attention of organised crime gangs.
A conference attended by 500 delegates from more than 60 countries and co-hosted by INTERPOL and Garda Síochána at Croke Park heard warnings of the consequences of criminal and terrorist networks securing funding through illicit trade and counterfeiting.
New figures compiled by the customs service show they have made around 4,500 seizures since January and confiscated more than 70,000 fake products with an estimated value of well over €3m.
Counterfeit goods seized included electronic equipment, cosmetics, mobile phone accessories, DVDs, headphones, handbags and purses, clothing, jewellery, sunglasses and games.