Hundreds of fake Chanel and Louis Vuitton bags seized in Trading Standards swoop in Manchester

Some of the fake designer bags on shelves Credit: Manchester City Council

Hundreds of fake Chanel and Louis Vuitton handbags have been seized as authorities try to crackdown on counterfeit crime.

Trading Standards officers removed 737 bags from a business in Manchester.

Many of them had been hidden behind other items on the shelves.

One of the counterfeit copies found in Manchester Credit: Manchester City Council

The swoop, at MH Import & Export Ltd on Derby Street in May, was the most recent of several interventions between the company, Manchester City Council and brand representatives.

In 2017 the authority advised the company about its responsibilities not to sell counterfeit goods and in 2019 it was contacted by Chanel about selling goods which may bear its trademark. 

The council says the warnings were not heeded and as a result company director Hakan Yazar, of Shayfield Road, was interviewed by officers in December 2019. 

Another bag seized by Trading Standards officers Credit: Manchester City Council

The 43 year old admitted that he was responsible for the ordering of stock, but claimed that he did not know anything about trade marks, that he did not remember receiving a letter from the council and that following a cease and desist letter from Chanel he took counterfeit products off the shelves. 

He also claimed that he intended to destroy the bags but had trouble in doing so. 

Yazar pleaded guilty to two breaches of the Trade Mark Act 1994 at Manchester Magistrates Court. 

He was sentenced to carry out 120 hours of unpaid work and was fined £500. He was also ordered to pay costs of £1,250 and a victim surcharge of £90. A forfeiture order was made for the counterfeit products. 

The Cheetham Hill-based firm has since gone into liquidation.