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Fake skin creams worth R15m seized at two Joburg mall raids

Five people were arrested after police seized counterfeit goods valued at R15 million following raids on two Johannesburg malls. Picture: Supplied

Five people were arrested after police seized counterfeit goods valued at R15 million following raids on two Johannesburg malls. Picture: Supplied

Published Jun 16, 2022

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Pretoria - Gauteng police conducted raids at the Pan Africa Mall in Alexandra and the Joburg Mall, where they seized counterfeit goods valued at R15 million.

Five suspects were arrested during the raids.

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Police spokesperson Captain Xoli Mbele said the joint operation was carried out by police in conjunction with Custom Services, Brand Protectors, EMS, Help 24, South African pharmaceutical regulators and the American Homeland investigators, among others.

“They confiscated fabrics and consumer goods. Pharmaceutical regulators confiscated large quantities of skin creams and other pharmaceutical products that can only be obtained through a script,” said Mbele.

Mbele said the suspects had violated the Medicines and Related Substances Act 101 of 1965.

“Five suspects between the ages of 22 and 37 were apprehended for possession and dealing in counterfeit goods. Counterfeit goods have a negative impact on the economy of the country,” Mbele said.

In a similar incident last week, the Hawks seized fake branded clothing worth R100 000 at Eastgate Shopping Centre.

Hawks spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Philani Nkwalase said the search was preceded by a test purchase of products to secure a successful search warrant, which was obtained.

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“During the search large quantities of counterfeit clothing items bearing well-known brand labels were found and seized for further investigation.

“The goods valued at R100 000 were seized and transported to the designated counterfeit goods depot pending the finalisation of the criminal and civil case against the suspects,” Nkwalase said.

Nkwalase said that the shop owner was served with a summons to appear in court for contravention of the Counterfeit Goods Act.

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