Minnesota Public Radio NewsQ reported Wednesday that officials with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) seized over 17,000 counterfeit items from Twin Cities-area businesses, with an estimated street value of $643,000.
ICE Special Agent Claude Arnold said consumers should be on the look out for counterfeit items, especially at this time of the year.
The counterfeit items range from brand name purses and perfumes to football jerseys with fake signatures from Joe Mauer and Brett Favre.
Industry and trade associations estimate that counterfeiting and piracy cost the U.S. economy between $200 billion and $250 billion per year, and more than 750,000 American jobs.
Two weeks ago ICE agents seized counterfeit purses, clothing and other items from businesses in Duluth.