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Self-Storage and Counterfeit Merchandise- A Growing Concern

In a November 2016 article in the New York Times titled: Counterfeiting Trade Settles Into a New York Standby: Self-Storage Units, written by Michael Wilson, it details a recent raid of a Queens self-storage facility in which hundreds of counterfeit handbags and purses were seized, as well as the arrest of two persons.

The article highlights how counterfeiters are making more-and-more use of self-storage to warehouse their goods, and that the self-storage operators appear to be, ‘willfully blind.’ According to the New York Times article, “A worker at a competing storage business nearby shrugged and said employees did not know what was in the lockers.”

But that reaction has not gone over well in New York City Hall in 2013. Then Mayor Bloomberg established the Office of Special Enforcement to take self-storage operators that are ‘willfully blind’ to court.

According to a 2013 blog post published in The Storage Facilitator.com titled: Storage Facility Settles Unprecedented Counterfeit Goods Lawsuit, Mayor Bloomberg’s Chief Policy Advisor had this to say, “The message to the self-storage industry is clear. You can’t look the other way when criminals turn your storage facility into a warehouse for illegal activity.”

Except, it doesn’t appear much impact on this problem is being made.

“Storage Facility Settles Unprecedented Counterfeit Goods Lawsuit” http://blog.selfstorage.com/storage-news/storage-facility-settles-unprecedented-counterfeit-goods-lawsuit-2574

“Counterfeiting Trade Settles Into  New York Standby: Self-Storage Units” https://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/21/nyregion/counterfeiting-trade-settles-into-a-new-york-standby-self-storage-units.html?smid=li-share

 

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Ron Alvarez is an IP Protection and Investigations specialist at XG Consultants Group, Inc., in New York City. He is a former NYPD lieutenant where he investigated robbery, narcotics, internal affairs, and fine art theft cases. Ron is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and earned a B.A. in Government and Public Administration from John Jay College of Criminal Justice in Manhattan. He has published a number of articles on various topics for PI Magazine. Ron is licensed in New York State.

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