Some of the most well known fashion brands are on display in the Seized! gallery at Merseyside Maritime Museum. At first glance, the fashion items may appear like the genuine article but they are in fact all fakes.
Counterfeit 'Guess' belt buckles.
Our display of fake items, which opened in July 2018, features counterfeit versions of brands such as Gucci, Chanel, Philipp Plein, Hermes and many more. No sooner has a new fashion product hit the market, and the counterfeiters are fast to follow with a cheaper and more inferior copy. Border Force monitors the UK ports, airports and postal hubs for fake items.
These exhibits were seized at Heathrow airport as part of a large consignment from Turkey. Although it’s tempting to fall for the cheaper counterfeit version, corners are cut in the production, resulting in poor quality and often dangerous products. Electrical items such as the imitation iPhone are not properly safety checked. Electrocution from the phone charger is a real risk. The money generated through the sale of these items is often used to fund other serious organised crime.
Quite often it is easy to spot the obvious flaws with counterfeit products, like the poor quality of the materials and spelling mistakes on packaging. However these new items are surprisingly accurate with fine attention to detail. We hope that featuring them in the gallery will warn visitors of the issues around buying fake goods.
Lead image: Counterfeit iPhone7 with detailed packaging and invoice.