A Brent-based company has been slapped with a hefty fine after being caught with a stash of well over a thousand knock-off hoodies and T-shirts.
Brent Council Trading Standards Officers visited Souvenirs of London Ltd's warehouse in Willesden last year and found seven boxes of Oxford University hoodies, as well as other t shirts with the London Eye and London Dungeon trade marks printed on them. After inspection, over 1300 items of clothing were found to be fakes and were seized.
Oxford University brand representatives had previously contacted the director, Ms Minaxi Popat twice to ask her to stop selling the clothes - but the company denied that the goods breached Oxford University's trade mark and continued to supply them.
On 15 August 2017, Souvenirs of London Ltd was summoned to Willesden Magistrates Court. Ms Popat pleaded guilty to three charges on behalf of her company of possessing clothing with infringing trade marks. The company claimed they did not intend to breach any registered trade marks, and just wanted to show off famous landmarks.
Magistrates ordered the company to pay a total of £4785, including £1000 for each offence, £1615 of costs and a £170 victim surcharge as well as to forfeit all the goods seized from them.
Cllr Tom Miller, Cabinet Member for Stronger Communities, said:
"We want to send out a clear message that dodgy traders like this won't be tolerated in Brent. Selling trade marked items without the required consent is illegal and takes money away from genuine, reputable businesses. It's also not fair on customers who want to buy a genuine product and later find out they have purchased an unofficial knock-off.
"If businesses have doubts about goods they are thinking of selling, they must contact Trading Standards who will be more than willing to give advice and ensure everything is legitimate."