Seven vendors have been arrested on felony charges for offering counterfeit goods for sale valued at $500,000 at the Labor Day Gun Show and & Flea Market in Hillsville over the weekend.
According to Lt. J.J. Daniels of the Virginia State Police, the sting operation was a Virginia State Police collaboration with the Hillsville Police Department and Blazer Investigations. Daniels said seized goods included cell phone accessories such as Otter Boxes, jackets, and perfumes with a street value of $500,000 if they had have been the real products. The arrests were made Friday during the first day of the annual four-day event in Hillsville. Daniels said Blazer Investigations is a private group that helps with similar sting operations.
“They are a representative of several manufacturers and they are the ones who are the experts at trademark infringement and that sort of thing,” Daniels said. “They know what is legit and what is not.”
Similar arrests have been made at the Labor Day Gun Show & Flea Market in Hillsville, but this was the first bust in five or six years, Daniels said. He reminds the public that if something sounds too good to be true, there’s usually a reason.
“The manufacturers aren’t going to put stuff out there for $5 that costs $80 at Belk,” he said.
Allen Worrell can be reached at (276) 779-4062 or on Twitter@AWorrellTCN
Hillsville Police Department Sgt./Investigator Alan Gravley seizes counterfeit perfume items Friday during the Labor Day Gun Show & Flea Market in Hillsville. Seven vendors were arrested Friday and charged with felonies for selling counterfeit items with a street value of $500,000.