VIII. Public Security Organs Act on Criminal
Infringement on Intellectual Property Rights
In recent years, the Chinese public security organs have adopted a series of measures to crack down on all kinds of criminal IPR infringement, continuously enhanced their law enforcement standards and abilities, and safeguarded the sound development of the socialist market economy.
In 1998, to step up the fight against criminal IPR infringement, and in accordance with the provisions of the "Criminal Procedure Law," the Ministry of Public Security established a specialized department to organize, guide and coordinate the fight against criminal IPR infringement, and supervise over the handling of serious cases. Local public security organs at all levels, from the top downward, have set up specialized investigation teams for receiving, filing and investigating such criminal cases. From 2000 to 2004, the Chinese public security organs cracked 5,305 cases of criminal infringement on IPR, which involved nearly 2.2 billion yuan, and arrested 7,100 suspects. Among them, there were 4,269 cases concerning infringement on the exclusive rights of trademark ownership, which involved 1.18 billion yuan, and 5,564 suspects were arrested. A number of suspects were found guilty of the production and sale of fake or inferior products and illegal business operation, and sentenced accordingly.
Since November 2004, the Ministry of Public Security has launched a one-year national campaign against criminal infringement on the exclusive rights of trademark ownership, cracking some cases of criminal IPR infringement that were of widespread and baneful repercussions and involved large amounts of money. These cases included: production of fake Gillette razor blades cracked by the public security organs of Zhejiang Province, production of fake Adidas and Nike sports shoes cracked by the public security organs of Fujian Province, production of fake Cisco (USA) electronic products cracked by the public security organs of Guangdong Province, and production of fake brand-name liquors, including Wuliangye, cracked by the public security organs of Sichuan Province.
As more and more foreign companies are investing, selling their products and building enterprises and R&D centers in China, the Chinese public security organs have gradually established a system of regular communication and coordination with IPR proprietors, earnestly listening to their opinions and suggestions. Since December 2002, together with relevant associations of enterprises with foreign investment, the Ministry of Public Security has held three forums on "Protection of Intellectual Property Rights against Crimes" and published forum declarations, improving communication and coordination in this field.
In view of increasing transnational and trans-border criminal cases of IPR infringement, the Chinese public security organs attach great importance to international law enforcement cooperation in the fight against IPR infringement, and have conducted cooperation with the law enforcement organizations of various countries in assistance in investigation and collection of evidence, exchange of information and judicial assistance. In July 2004, working together with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement of the Department of Homeland Security of the United States, the Chinese public security organs successfully cracked a serious case of suspected sale of pirated DVDs in Shanghai, arrested seven suspects headed by an American citizen, raided three places where pirated DVDs were hidden, and confiscated over 210,000 pirated DVDs.