Saturday, May 30, 2009

Raid nets 4,700 counterfeit Columbia products in Thailand

Portland Business Journal

Columbia Sportswear Co. on Thursday said Thailand authorities confiscated more than 4,700 counterfeit Columbia products during raids on four retail outlets and two warehouses.

It’s the largest counterfeit bust to date for the Washington County sports apparel company (NASDAQ: COLM).

The company’s efforts to stamp out counterfeiters has recently been expanded to also target groups that produce, transport and sell counterfeit goods bearing Columbia’s trademarks.

Sparked by a tip from a Thai distributor for Columbia, the raids preceded several weeks of surveillance by private investigators hired by Columbia with cooperation from local Thai law enforcement agencies.

The efforts yielded the arrest of one of the alleged leaders of the counterfeiting and smuggling operation, who was caught near the Cambodian border. An arrest warrant has also been issued for the owner of a chain of retail stores and warehouses that were used to distribute and market the fake goods.

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