Two joint actions are currently underway in the United States against an influencer and eight companies for promoting counterfeit luxury goods.
It’s no secret that it’s easy to find counterfeit items online, with counterfeiters using sites like eBay, leboncoin and Amazon to sell their copies. But nowadays, they use social networks to capture their customers.
This is why luxury brands are multiplying legal actions in order to try to dry up these new distribution channels. This is the case of the joint action of Amazon and Cartier in the United States. The latter specify that these complaints concern “an influential personality on social networks” and eight companies “for advertising, promoting and facilitating the sale of counterfeit luxury goods via Instagram and other sites, in violation of Cartier’s trademarks and Amazon’s terms and conditions.”
Counterfeiting via social networks
The influencer appears to be a woman from Handan, China, and merchants involved in the “counterfeiting scheme” have been traced to other Chinese cities, according to court documents. In particular, she used Instagram to provide links to counterfeit Cartier jewelry on Amazon.
Amazon’s Counterfeit Crimes Unit has stopped a social media influencer from selling knockoff @Cartier.
The criminal concealed their iconic motifs & brand name as generic products in our store while promoting the fakes on social media—and was caught. https://t.co/0yIQIhfxAv
— Amazon News (@amazonnews) June 15, 2022
“By using social media to promote counterfeit products, bad actors are undermining trust and deceiving customers,” commented Kebharu Smith, Amazon’s associate general counsel, in a statement.
A second lawsuit accuses a store operating on Amazon of selling counterfeit Cartier products last year, passing off jewelry as unbranded in photos, but sending buyers counterfeits marked “Cartier”
Those involved in the scheme “advertised their counterfeit products on third-party social media websites using ‘hidden links’ to direct their followers to the counterfeit Cartier products, while disguising the products as unbranded products in Amazon store listings,” the lawsuit states.
This case is not the first nor the last of its kind, as counterfeiting is going strong and counterfeiters remain difficult to trace. Amazon says it is continuing its fight and has spent no less than $900 million in the past year “to protect customers, brands, vendor partners and the Amazon store from counterfeiting, fraud and other forms of abuse.”
Featured photo : © Cartier