WASHINGTON Nov 26 U.S. and European authorities
seized 132 domain names in a counterfeit goods crackdown linked
to Cyber Monday, the online bargain day, the head of U.S.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement said.
ICE agents seized 101 domain names in the United States and
31 were taken over by officers in Britain, Romania, Belgium,
France and Denmark and by Europol, the European Police Office,
ICE Director John Morton said.
The sites, many linked to organized crime, were selling fake
goods that ranged from National Football League jerseys and Nike
Inc shoes to Adobe Systems Inc software, he
"There is much money to be made out there duping consumers
and that is what is going on," Morton said on a conference call.
Investigations are ongoing and more sites will be seized in
In the United States, 41 rights owners' merchandise was
being sold on the seized sites, Morton said.
ICE said in a statement that one U.S. arrest had been made.
The crackdown marks the third year that ICE has targeted
websites selling counterfeit goods on Cyber Monday, the online
shopping spree. It is the first time the agency has carried out
the operation with European police.
The Cyber Monday seizures raise the total number of U.S.
sites taken over to 1,630 since ICE began its anti-counterfeit
campaign in June 2010.
PayPal accounts identified with the sites and holding a
total of more than $175,000 are being targeted for seizure, the
ICE statement said.
Morton put the scale of online piracy in the billions of
dollars. Much of the online counterfeiting is in China and other
parts of Asia, and U.S. authorities are working with China on
the problem, he said.