Fake designer gear found in police raid

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Staff reporter

POLICE acting on an anonymous tip-off found a large amount of counterfeit designer clothing.

Glazier Benjamin James Austin, 26, was selling the goods via his Facebook site.

Austin, of Berwyn Close, Bryn y Baal, Mold, also sold items by word of mouth to family and friends to supplement his income, a court heard.

The clothing, including T-shirts and tracksuit bottoms, had the adidas, Hugo Boss, Ed Hardy, Ted Baker and Nike UK labels on them.

But they were all bogus and he had bought the clothing from a contact in Manchester.

Austin admitted five charges under the Trademarks Act and asked for nine similar offences to be taken into consideration.

He was ordered to carry out 180 hours’ community work and to pay £85 costs.

Flintshire magistrates also ordered that the fake clothing should be confiscated and destroyed.

Justin Espie, prosecuting, said on January 28 police executed a search warrant at Austin’s home and found the fake designer clothing in numerous bin bags.

In total there were copies of 17 clothing brands.

Austin was not at home at the time but he later handed himself in to the police.

Records from his Facebook account showed he had been selling the clothing during January but there was also a reference to a transaction going back to last September.

Austin said he did not advertise them as fake and let people make up their own minds.

All the money made was for his own benefit, he said.

Paul Abrahams, defending, said Austin was employed as a specialist glazier which meant he was travelling all over the country.

He added: “Many young people find themselves in a position where their desire to wear what they would regard as top-notch fashionable clothes is not matched by their financial ability to pay for them.”

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