January 20, 2010; Phoenix, Arizona: Shanghai, PRC – The U.S. Golf Manufacturers Anti-Counterfeiting Working Group (the “Group”) comprised of Acushnet Company, Callaway Golf, Cleveland Golf/Srixon, Nike Golf, PING and TaylorMade Golf Company reports that the Shanghai Huangpu District People’s Court has sentenced a retail shop owner, Fan Chaokui, to serve a seven month jail term and pay a fine after being convicted of selling counterfeit golf equipment. Two other defendants, employees at the retail shop, were also found guilty but did not receive jail terms after cooperating with Chinese law enforcement and the Court.
The Court convicted and sentenced Fan Chaokui based upon evidence secured during a raid conducted by the Shanghai Public Security Bureau (“PSB”) in June 2009 against a retail outlet located at the Shanghai Tao Bao City Feng Xiang Clothing Gift Market. Several persons were arrested by the PSB after the raids. Nearly 1,000 pieces of counterfeit golf equipment were seized, including counterfeit golf clubs, golf bags, golf balls and assorted golf gloves and apparel.
This enforcement action was conducted after complaints were filed with the local PSB agency by the U.S. Golf Manufacturers Anti-Counterfeiting Working Group. The seized goods were illegal copies of authentic products made by all six of the Group’s members.
The Group was formed in 2004 to petition governments to enforce their country’s laws against counterfeiters of golf equipment products. As a result of the Group’s petitioning efforts, dozens of successful raids of manufacturing, warehouse, assembly and retail facilities have been executed by Chinese law enforcement and civil enforcement authorities over the past five years. Several business operators have been arrested and many have now been prosecuted in the Chinese courts.
The U.S. Golf Manufacturers Anti-Counterfeiting Working Group consists of the worlds’ leading golf equipment manufacturers. Its members and brands include Acushnet Company – Titleist, FootJoy and Cobra Golf; Callaway Golf – Odyssey, Top-Flite and Ben Hogan; Cleveland Golf /Srixon; Nike Golf; PING; and TaylorMade-adidas Golf and Ashworth.