That Fake Rolex You Buy In China May Cost You More Than The Real Thing

from the after-customs-has-its-way-with-you dept

Petréa Mitchell writes in to let us know about yet another case where trademark protection is being abused. "A guy decided to bring back some obviously fake Rolexes from China as souvenirs for his family. This was probably not a bright idea in any case, but US Customs thinks it's worth fining him $55,300. The fine is allegedly based on the street value of real Rolex watches, but he points out that there's no way anyone would pay a full Rolex price for fakes as obvious as these. The government says he should be glad it's only $55,300, because if Rolex had gotten personally involved it could have been $100,000... per watch." This one raises all sorts of questions. The thing is, buying these fake Rolexes shouldn't be against the law -- selling them should be. However, the guy wasn't caught selling them. Either way, while aren't there more important things for Customs to be doing than fining people for wearing fake Rolexes?

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  1. identicon
    CorpsRuleMen, 10 May 2007 @ 1:37pm


    "you're stating that the consumer of the illegal function shouldn't be puniushed.. even though they know the item/service that they're engaging in is illegal..."

    $55,000? $100,000 per infringement?

    It's not him thats doing the copying, it's the guy making the fake Rolexes. When Rolex copies a design, it's a civil matter and the company has to take Rolex to court. If you bought one of those Rolex's that infringes on other peoples IP rights, you would not be fined.

    But when people copy Rolex's design, in the USA, out of all proportion, the person who bought the Rolexes is treated the same the person making them and faces stiff penalties.

    It's unbalanced and unreasonable.

    It's like Rolex can steal your car and you have to sue to get it back, but if you stole Rolex's car, the police come around and take the car and your house in compensation.

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