Over $10M in Fake Jewelry Seized at Cincinnati Airport

US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers recently seized three shipments containing counterfeit jewelry—most of which were Cartier bracelets—at the CVG Airport in Cincinnati. One shipment alone would have been worth over $8 million had the bracelets been genuine.

A total of 700 counterfeit Cartier Love bracelets were seized. Officers suspected these bracelets to be counterfeit based on their origin and appearance. The bracelets lacked fine details, were constructed from cheap material, and contained fake inlayed diamonds. This shipment originated in Hong Kong enroute to a business in Illinois. These high-end bracelets would have had a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price of $8.82 million had the items been authentic.

On the same night, officers were inspecting freight from China when they discovered two more shipments of counterfeit merchandise. The first shipment contained 60 Cartier bracelets and rings along with other brand name jewelry such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Bvlgari headed to a private residence in Colorado. The second shipment contained four Cartier Love bracelets, some with what appeared to be inlayed diamonds, heading to a residence in New Jersey. These two shipments would have had a combined Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price of $1.96 million had the merchandise been genuine.

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“While online shopping has increased, CBP stays vigilant by stopping illegal shipments like these from damaging our economy,” said LaFonda D. Sutton-Burke, director of field operations at the Chicago Field Office. “Officers at the Port of Cincinnati are always on the lookout to uphold our mission of protecting the American borders from dangerous people and materials.”

All of the jewelry was determined to be counterfeit by CBP’s Centers for Excellence and Expertise (CEE), the agency’s trade experts.

“Our mission is to keep our nation safe, and we do this well here at the Port of Cincinnati,” said Cincinnati Port Director Richard Gillespie. “We encourage legitimate trade and encourage shoppers to do your research to be aware of illegitimate businesses before making purchases online.”

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