That Brand Name Purchase May Be Fake!

That Louis Vuitton you just bought could be fake and by buying it you may have helped a criminal network.

Most of us will be very distraught if we discover that some of our purchases contribute to criminal activity. Well, from research done on the domestic market in Trinidad, many counterfeited global brands are on sale around the country. Brands such as Polo, Ralph Lauren, Nike, Adidas, Louis Vuitton, Coach, Burberry and many others can be found in establishments from high end malls to suitcase traders. Unknowingly, some of our entrepreneurs are actively supporting criminal networks. This problem exists across the region and around the world. During this Christmas season Crime Stoppers is asking you to look carefully at what and where you buy since you can unintentionally be supporting crime. You should also be aware that many of these criminal groups operate by offering their goods online on some of the popular shopping sites.

Counterfeiting is one aspect of illicit trade. This involves a range of activities that include the fashion industry, narcotics, medicines, food and consumer products, environmental crimes, human trafficking and several other activities.
So what can we do as individuals? First, be careful about buying items that you believe may not be genuine. Continuing to do this only allows you to be a part of the crime problem and not the solution. Also, be careful about where you buy. Do you really believe a supplier of a genuine pristine brand will be on sale from that location? What about the price? Will a genuine brand be sold at that price, even if it’s on sale? Of note is that legitimate brand owners have found that in many instances in Trinidad the price of the fake is quite close to the genuine brand making the problem a bit more difficult.

Often times the discussion on the counterfeit items entering our shores focuses on the significant damage that is done to legitimate brands and the deleterious effects on individuals’ health when the counterfeited product is one like pharmaceuticals. Also, when genuine items become illicit by evading legitimate entry points, the discussion shifts to government revenue that is forgone. However, another important side to this story today is that transnational crime is being funded even more through the use of illicit brands. While this is not a new phenomenon and has occurred for decades, law enforcement around the world has found that international criminal networks are funding their activities through this avenue where penalties are significantly less. So what if you knew that the dollar you spend on that counterfeit shoe or handbag may be ultimately funding international crimes such as terrorism, drug trafficking and money-laundering? What will you do?

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) noted that around the world several operations have been uncovered where proceeds from drug trafficking were channeled into counterfeiting, and where profits from the sale of counterfeit goods were used to advance other illicit operations of criminals. In 2016 Crime Stoppers International signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the UNODC at the conference in Trinidad and Tobago. This agreement is aimed at reducing transnational crimes such as illicit trade and improving citizens’ security.

Crime Stoppers is therefore encouraging you the consumer to research your product to ensure you purchase genuine goods and so not be a part of funding international criminal empires. If you are concerned that an item being purchased may be counterfeit, you may contact the Intellectual Property Office of Trinidad and Tobago, the Trinidad and Tobago Bureau of Standards or the Consumer Affairs Division of The Ministry of Trade and Industry. You should also check the official websites of brand owners to find credible information on identifying their genuine products.

Remember to report any kind of suspicious activity you can also call us toll free at 800-8477 (TIPS)
Garland Samuel
Executive Manager
Crime Stoppers Trinidad and Tobago

‘Be A Crime Stopper’ Launched

Crime Stoppers Trinidad and Tobago has launched a campaign “Be A Crime Stopper”. The drive seeks to encourage the ordinary citizen to actively participate in crime fighting by using the effective and safe facility of Crime Stoppers.

Knowing that organized criminal activity is normally planned in advanced with co-conspirators, members of the public may therefore have information before a crime occurs. The campaign therefore pushes the citizen who has witnessed a crime or thinks that some kind of criminal activity is being planned to boldly contact Crime Stoppers. This is one of the ways criminal activity can be reduced in our country.

Crime Stoppers with its tremendous track record provides this opportunity for every citizen to “Be A Crime Stopper”. Look out for our ads, billboards, videos and posters in your community. You can also invite us to visit your community group to share about our programme so you have a better understanding of how we work.

“Be A Crime Stopper” Call 800-TIPS or submit your tip here.

37th Annual CSI Conference in Trinidad … A Huge Success

Crime Stoppers Trinidad and Tobago hosted the 37th Crime Stoppers International (CSI) Conference between October 2 and October 5, 2016 at the Trinidad Hilton and Conference Centre.

Delegates were present from twenty two (22) countries across the world with representation from each of the seven (7) CSI regions.  These included the regions of Caribbean/Bermuda & Latin America, the United States of America, Canada, Europe, Australia, South & West Pacific and Africa. More

Crime Stoppers Trinidad and Tobago Hosts The CSI World

home_mainpic_smlCrime Stoppers Trinidad and Tobago is pleased to be the hosts of the 37th Annual Crime Stoppers International Conference. This will be held from October 2 to October 5, 2016 at the Trinidad Hilton and Conference Centre in Port of Spain.

The conference titled “Anonymous Reporting in the Digital Age” will see delegates from more than twenty (20) countries visiting our shores for three (3) days of plenary and panel discussions along with many opportunities for networking and sharing best practices. Registration is open and special packages are available for those who decide to book their places early.

Visit the conference website here for full details. More

Regional security firm supports Crime Stoppers’ efforts in fighting transnational crime

Barbados: Leading regional security firm, Amalgamated Security Services Limited (ASSL) has pledged its support of Crime Stoppers International’s efforts in fighting international crime particularly in the areas of human trafficking, child exploitation, illicit trade, environmental crime, and the international location and arrest of fugitives.

In announcing his company’s US$ 50,000.00 sponsorship at the 2015 Crime Stoppers International (CSI) Conference, John Aboud, ASSL’s Finance Director stated that his company was happy to support CSI’s efforts and said that “because of its guarantee of anonymity, Crime Stoppers is becoming increasingly relevant in assisting law enforcement with obtaining information on organized transnational crimes”.

Aboud continued; “We believe that organizations such as Crime Stoppers need to have the resources necessary to improve their capabilities and capacities to deal with the increased use of digital technology in the commissioning of crimes, and encourage other corporate entities to follow our lead”.

CSI’s President, Alexander MacDonald expressed his appreciation for the support provided, and recognized Amalgamated Security as being a ‘natural partner’. “Though based in the Caribbean, Amalgamated Security has a global vision, and this is evident in the state of the art services which it offers such as general security and risk management solutions, border control & management, aviation security, large scale CCTV systems, license plate and facial recognition systems as well as forensic services and supplies”, stated MacDonald as he signed the sponsorship agreement.

For Media Enquiries contact:

Devrol Dupigny
Executive Director
Crime Stoppers International
+1 246 230 2330

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