Thousands of fake DVDs discovered as officers raid house in Penryn
THOUSANDS of fake discs, including numerous films, music and computer games, have been seized from a house in Penryn.
Trading Standards' officials joined police officers and the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) after receiving intelligence that counterfeit DVDs were being distributed from the premises.
Investigations into the raid are continuing but it is estimated that around 10,000 fake discs were seized as well as computer equipment, laptops and mobile phones.
Stuart Benson, assistant head of public health and protection at Cornwall Council said the counterfeit trade may appear a lucrative option in the current difficult economic climate.
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But he warned: "They must realise that on prosecution, any person found guilty of such activities could be looking at penalties of up to 10 years in prison and/or an unlimited fine.
"In addition to this any benefit claims or tenancy agreements may be affected and under the Proceeds of Crime Act any assets may be confiscated."
Kieron Sharp, FACT director general, said: "Criminals selling counterfeit DVDs across the South West are harming the livelihoods of honest hardworking people in local businesses.
"Cornwall is a popular location for making television programmes and films; this provides a boost to the local economy, which activity such as this jeopardises.
"The operation proves the effectiveness of a multi- agency approach to tackling criminality, co-ordinated by Cornwall Trading Standards who have shown exemplary leadership."
Lance Kennedy, cabinet member for community safety, public protection and waste management added: "Not only does counterfeiting impact on the local economy and employment, it is also a common method of fundraising by organised crime and terrorist groups.
"Any form of counterfeiting should be reported immediately to protect the whole community."
To report suspected counterfeiting activity please call Citizens Advice Services on 0845 4040506 or CrimeStoppers on 0800 555111.
All information received will be treated in the strictest confidence.