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“World’s largest” counterfeit cartridge seizure seen in UAE

June 12, 2013

2786780616Raid in Ajman results in arrest of Chinese dealers and seizure of largest amount of counterfeit ink.

Emirates 24/7 and The Gulf Today reported on the raid conducted by police in the UAE following a complaint by HP, which involved a warehouse that “operated under the cover of carpet production” but which actually produced counterfeit HP ink cartridges.

Nearly Dh280 million ($76 million/€57 million) worth of cartridges were seized, claimed to be the largest ever amount, along with equipment for filling the cartridges and forging the trademark and printers and laser systems used to copy the original production code issued by HP.

Two Chinese dealers were arrested for the production, distribution and selling of the counterfeit products, with police stating that the men live legally in the UAE and own one company, two warehouses and one villa in Ajman, with a store in Dubai.

Brigadier Sheikh Sultan Bin Abdullah Al Nuaimi explained at a press conference given by police and HP’s parent company lawyer: “We were notified by this lawyer that there were fake HP products being distributed in the market […] The lawyer had purchased some of the products and after comparing them with originals they were found to be lacking.”

He added that after a police investigation, it was discovered that there were three production sites in Ajman – two warehouses and a villa, and another warehouse in Dubai. The premises were then monitored by police and after fulfilling the legal procedures, the warehouses and villa were raided.

“The punishment for dealing in counterfeit products is one year in prison or a fine of Dh5,000 ($1,300/€1,000) to Dh10,000 ($2,700/€2,000),” said Al Nuaimi. “But in a big case like this we expect the judges can mete out a suitable, bigger punishment.”

HP’s company lawyer, Abdulrahman Al Fardan, said that while they expected that some of the counterfeit products would have made it to market, they believed the business had only been conducted for a few months and so the products would not have spread far.

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