A total of 12,526 web pages offering counterfeit products and pirated content have been removed from the internet during an international operation that has mobilized almost thirty countries, which also allowed the seizure of 127,365 fake goods valued at 3.8 million euros ($3.9 million).
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According to the preliminary results of the investigation, the main suspect earned up to 150,000 euros a month, led “a wealthy lifestyle in a luxury home, drove expensive cars and paid ostentatious vacations all over the world,” the news agency stressed on Monday. Europol police coordination.
During the course of the international operation, ten search warrants have been issued and 14 people have been formally arrested or prosecuted for crimes against intellectual property.
National authorities on several continents have removed 12,526 web pages, taken offline 32 servers used to distribute and host illegal content for 2,294 television channels, and closed 15 virtual stores that sold counterfeit products on social networks.
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In addition, investigators have been able to seize physical assets such as 127,365 counterfeit products, including clothing, watches, shoes, accessories, perfumes, electronics, and phone cases, valued at more than €3.8 million.
“These discoveries show once again that the production of counterfeit goods is increasingly taking place within the European Union. In addition, it emphasizes the increasing overlap of intellectual property crimes with tax evasion and money laundering.he pointed Europol.
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The Bulgarian authorities have investigated a network that used accounts of Facebook to sell clothing that imitated well-known brands and, in several house searches, they discovered a workshop with sewing machines and seized well-known brand labels, fake stickers, unbranded items ready to be processed, 600 fake items worth 35,000 euros and a weapon of fire in illegal possession.
The operation, the thirteenth edition of an operation focused on eliminating web pages that offer counterfeit products or products implicated in Internet piracy, has had the participation of, among other countries, Belgium, Bulgaria, Brazil, Colombia, France, Greece, Hungary , Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.
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