Massive haul of fake CDs seized at Manchester Airport

Massive haul of fake CDs seized at Manchester airport. Credit: Graeme Ord

More than one tonne of fake CDs was seized at Manchester Airport when police smashed a massive smuggling operation.

The consignment, thought to be the largest haul of fake CDs ever found in the UK, included illegally copied albums by Taylor Swift and the Rolling Stones.

Officers said the fake CDs were destined to be sold to unwitting Christmas shoppers.

The 1.2 tonnes of counterfeit CDs were found by Border Force officers and City of London Police among the cargo on a plane which arrived at Manchester from Hong Kong earlier this month.

A further 20,000 fake albums were discovered in co-ordinated raids which followed the Manchester Airport seizure.

The total street value of all the counterfeit goods seized in the investigation was around £245,000.

Police said a man from Morecambe, Lancashire, was interviewed regarding the haul and the investigation remains ongoing.

Supt Tony Crampton of the City of London Police Economic Crime Directorate said: "Counterfeiting is a crime that costs the country tens of millions in lost tax, damages legitimate business and often deceives the general public into paying good money for sub-standard fake products.

"This week's co-ordinated raids demonstrate how seriously we take the issue of counterfeiting and has, in the run up to Christmas, significantly disrupted the criminal distribution of counterfeit CDs throughout the UK."

The operation was supported by anti-piracy investigators from music organisations BPI and IFPI.