23/05/2003

Police uncover two counterfeit goods operations

Police have closed down two separate counterfeit goods operations one in Belfast and one located in Portadown worth over £350,000.

A range of equipment worth an estimated £200,000 was uncovered by police officers from the Serious and Organised Crime Unit in Portadown yesterday.

Among the equipment recovered were DVD-writers and burners, video taping equipment, music CD burners and machinery used in the manufacture of computer games.

A quantity of suspected counterfeit goods were also seized and taken away for further examination.

Earlier this week, in Belfast police seized suspected counterfeit goods worth an estimated £180,000 during searches of two houses in the Ormeau Road area on Wednesday.

Among the items seized were DVDs, CDs, computer games and equipment used to copy disks.

A quantity of suspected stolen goods were also seized as part of the operation which involved officers from the Serious and Organised Crime Squad with the support of police and in partnership representatives of FACT - the Federation Against Copyright Theft.

Commenting on the find Inspector Trevor O’Neill said: "This is the second major haul in South Belfast in the last six months.

"As a result of this search the police were able to get counterfeit goods relating to The Matrix Reloaded, which was launched in Northern Ireland for the first time this week.

"It’s a reflection of how close the Police are behind the criminals that they were intent on bringing this out today when we were able to seize it yesterday," he added.

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