Greek authorities bust multi-million Euro fake shoes ring pushed via Facebook ads

25 October 2019
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Greek authorities have struck a serious blow to the trafficking of contraband products after uncovering a multi-million Euro scam of illegal sales of fake brand products sold over social media pop up ads.

A unit from the Special Secretariat for Financial and Economic Crime Unit (SDOE) located 7,932 pairs of shoes at the port of Piraeus in containers that had arrived from China and were destined for a business address in Albania, according to the consignment documents seized.

On Friday, September 20, 2019, a unit of SDOE in Attica used leads it had obtained and other relevant intelligence, and in a coordinated operation in conjunction with the 3rd Piraeus Customs Office, seized a container at the port of Piraeus from China which had 6,672 pairs of “Nike” and 1,260 pairs of “Adidas” footwear.

Authorities also seized 36 boxes of 432 pairs of anonymous footwear, which were used as a cover by the ring to conceal the counterfeit footwear and mislead customs authorities.

The damage incurred to the trademark beneficiaries is estimated at € 1,055,100, while the seized fake products were transferred to a certified recycling company in Attica for destruction.

This ring, which was staffed by a large number of people, including frontmen and concealed persons, some of which have been identified by authorities, acted through misleading ads of branded sports shoes that were sold over Facebook at prices equal to the original products.

Online shoppers placed orders to non-existent companies who would then dispatch the fake footwear to the unsuspecting customers.

Police revealed that according to receipt documentation by the courier company, the total amount of cash payments received in the last two years by cheated consumers and attributed to members of the circuit amounts to a staggering € 3,270,289.80.

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