Falkirk’s pre-festive blitz nets a fortune in fake branded clothes

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Homeless people and wounded service personnel are to gain from a major seizure of counterfeit clothes spearheaded by Falkirk Council.

Some 440kg of illicit gooods have been handed over for recycling after the Falkirk-led exercise which also involved East Lothian, Fife and Angus.

Brands such as Mulberry, Nike, Hugo Boss and The North Face are among the big names which were ripped off by fraudsters and uncovered by trading standards.

The goods will be rebranded and given a second life by recycling firm Sports Traider.

Some of the clothes are used to make toys, while other goods are rebranded and sold on the Sports Traider website – with money raised helping disabled and disadvantaged people gain employment, training and sporting opportunities.

Kirstie Crosson, Falkirk Council’s trading standards coordinator, said: “We’re happy that seized counterfeit goods can be used to benefit charitable causes.

“Once associated court cases for such goods are concluded and the goods are forfeited.

“It’s left to the Council to find funds for incineration or landfill. With partnerships like Sports Traider, these costs are eliminated”.

She added: “It also helps us reduce the environmental impact of disposing the goods, though in some cases the goods cannot be recycled or reused because of safety concerns.

“We’ll continue to do everything in our power to protect Falkirk’s consumers from harm.”

Along with clothing, alcohol and DVDs, illicit tobacco and cigarettes are often seized with the help of specialist detection dogs.

Other items such as trainers and tyres are shredded and used in the building of children’s playgrounds and parks, while counterfeit alcohol can be used to make air freshener.

The majority of items seized by trading standards were from individuals selling illicit goods through social media, car boot sales, markets or their own homes.