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ICE Announces Seizure Of $80 Million In Counterfeit Goods

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Items seized in Operation Holiday Hoax (credit: ICE)

Items seized in Operation Holiday Hoax (credit: ICE)

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) - Fake NFL jerseys, Disney knock-offs, and replicas of an Angry Birds toy are all part of the massive seizure of counterfeit goods announced Thursday by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

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“The majority were seized in Queens, Manhattan, and Long Island,” said James Hayes, the special agent in charge of Homeland Security’s investigation in New York.

Hayes says the items were sold at small stores and flea markets.

“Especially in an economy such as this, parents out there trying to find a good deal often times will find a counterfeit item, and we’re trying to send the message out that, often times, these are much more expensive in the long run,” said Hayes.

He said some of the toys even contained lead paint and pieces that can break off.

In all, about $80 million worth of goods were seized in what was dubbed Operation Holiday Hoax.

In the New York City-area, special agents with ICE seized 133,077 items with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $35,245,627. This includes a seizure made December 20, of 70,000 counterfeit toys with an MSRP of $800,000.

Three people are under arrest.

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