Los Angeles Port Police have seized over US$10 million worth of counterfeit iPods and iPhones. The fake iPods and iPhones had been shipped from Asia and we designed to look identical to Apple’s own products.
“This was a well-funded operation, and the counterfeits looked very authentic,” commented LA Port Police chief Ron Boyd.
Suspects caught in fake iPod scheme
Two brothers, Edward and Bahram Zahab, have been arrested as part of the investigation. The former was charged with three felony counterfeit goods sales counts, and the latter was charged with one count.
The fake iPods and iPhones were smuggled into the country as parts where they were assembled and packaged for sale. They didn’t, however, include Apple’s software, so victims would have realized they bought fake goods only after trying to connect the devices to iTunes.
Along with the counterfeit iPods and iPhones, authorities seized other fake electronics, and receipts showing more than $7 million in counterfeit merchandise had already been sold.
The investigation, which is still ongoing, is being conducted by Port Police as part of the California Highway Patrol’s Cargo Theft Interdiction Program and Homeland Security Investigations.