Market raided in search of fakes

AN INVESTIGATION is under way today to see if 150 DVDs seized during a raid at Felixstowe Market are pirate copies.Trading standards officers and police moved in on Sunday, and arrested two men who had been selling popular film titles from their market stall.

AN INVESTIGATION is under way today to see if 150 DVDs seized during a raid at Felixstowe Market are pirate copies.

Trading standards officers and police moved in on Sunday, and arrested two men who had been selling popular film titles from their market stall.

The stall's stock of cheap DVDs had netted its traders more than £500 in just an hour.

They are suspected of selling brand new films, including some which haven't even completed their run at the cinema yet, let alone been released to the buying public.


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At the police's arrival, the stallholders were handcuffed. As the sun beat down, they watched quietly as their stock was swept into labelled plastic bags and boxes to be taken away and examined more closely.

Few passers-by ambling round the market – which often attracts 8,000 people - seemed to notice the slick raid carried out by five plain-clothed officials.

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A few youngsters were visibly disappointed not to be able to buy any of the DVDs being seized by officers far less likely to enjoy them.

Within half an hour, all that was left of the suspect stall was an empty slot in the row of canvases, as its neighbours continued a brisk trade in legal goods.

It had been a carefully-planned operation, preceded by several undercover visits by officers keen to establish that the trading pair had more disks of suspicious origin stashed behind their table showcasing just a few.

The traders were interviewed, and bailed to return to Felixstowe Police Station in a month's time..

As well as seizing 146 DVDs, officers also took the £504 taken by the traders in their first hour - by employing their powers under the Proceeds of Crime Act for the first time.

That money will go towards more crime-fighting projects in Suffolk, if it is retained.

Weblink: www.tradingstandards.gov.uk/suffolk

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