“At San Francisco-based Sideman and Bancroft, attorneys help clients stop counterfeit goods from being imported and sold by targeting and investigating counterfeit traffickers. Working on behalf of companies, its attorneys have worked with the FBI, Secret Service, Homeland Security Investigations, and other state and federal law enforcement agencies. That kind of collaboration has led to dozens of criminal convictions, jail sentences and restitution orders, the firm said.
Bob Cozzolina, the firm’s global customs and investigations director, maintains a global network of investigators who work on cases. Sometimes clients discover the problem after seeing sales decline in a specific market or category. Or they are tipped off by customs agents who spot counterfeit products.
“Some of the counterfeiters have been clever, and they tend to mask their country of origin by moving manufacturing of counterfeit products to other developing countries that might not be on customs or law enforcement’s radar,” such as locations in Latin America, Middle East and Africa, Cozzolina said. “We think it’s important on the counterfeiting side to address the problem from a variety of angles — civil, criminal, customs, supply chain, education.”