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Selling fakes on Facebook lands barber with community order

Published July 19, 2019 2.55pm

A woman has been ordered to pay over £1,000 and sentenced to a 12-month community order for the sale of counterfeit goods advertised on Facebook.

McCaughey goods

A counterfeit Louis Vuitton belt that was seized

Jane McCaughey, of Magenta Court, Langley Park, pleaded guilty to being in possession of counterfeit goods, with the intention of selling or distributing, and was charged a total of £1,007.85 at Newton Aycliffe Magistrates Court.

During an investigation by our trading standards team, officers conducted an inspection of the defendant's business premises, Jane's Barbers, also in Langley Park, and seized a large number of items bearing the names of designer brands such as Vivienne Westwood, Hugo Boss, and Michael Kors.

An analysis of the defendant's mobile phone, which was also seized, revealed that she advertised and took orders for the items on Facebook and arranged for them to be collected from her commercial barber premises.

Harming legitimate businesses

The 48-year-old said in mitigation that she knew it was wrong but took a calculated risk with the intention that the money raised would tide her over Christmas. She admitted that she made a profit from the sales and that she travelled regularly to Manchester where she would collect the items to resell.

McCaughey was fined £107, ordered to pay legal costs of £300, investigation costs of £515.85 and a victim surcharge of £85, equalling a total of £1,007.85.

Owen Cleugh, our consumer protection manager, said: "When you buy fake goods you are helping a trader break the law. The possession and selling of counterfeit goods can carry a jail sentence of up to 10 years, and not only does it deceive customers, everyday it harms legitimate businesses trying to make an honest living."

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