Counterfeit products worth billions were seized over the weekend by the Bureau of Customs (BoC) in Guiguinto, Bulacan province, north of Manila.
Customs Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon, with agents of the Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS), uncovered the illegal goods in an early morning Saturday raid on the Richard Isagani Sandy (RIS) 5 Industrial Complex in Barangay Tabe, Guiguinto.
CIIS Director Neil Estrella disclosed on Sunday that the warehouse was a virtual manufacturing plant equipped with machines and other equipment used in the production of various fake goods.
“The machines might be legally imported but eventually found being used for illegal activities,” Estrella said.
Found inside the warehouse were counterfeit items like soaps, shoes, shampoos and cigarettes.
Also found were candies, lubricants, motor oils, used clothing, medicines, insect repellent and deodorant.
Representatives from the Intellectual Property Manila Associate-Brand Protection Specialist confirmed that the samples were indeed counterfeit products of original brands Palmolive, Dove, Sunsilk, Creamsilk, Johnsons, Safeguard, Cetaphil, Gucci shoes and Marlboro, among others.
Counterfeit goods are classified as prohibited under Republic Act 8293 or the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines.
Faeldon said the BoC’s efforts to suppress the proliferation of fake products are meant to protect consumers, local manufacturers and the public.
Persons behind the counterfeiting are being investigated by the BoC-CIIS.
Estrella said they are looking into the real identities of the reported owners of the complex who are only known as William, Isagani and Sandy.