Police in Guangdong will not let up in their fight against crimes involving the violation of intellectual property rights (IPR), a provincial security official said yesterday.
Speaking at a press conference in Guangzhou, the provincial capital, He Guangping, deputy director of the Guangdong provincial bureau of public security, said: "The fight against IPR infringement will be long and tough, but police will remain vigilant and will not relax."
The southern Chinese province, which borders Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions, has taken the lead in the development of measures to protect patents, trademarks and copyrights.
As well as hinting at further campaigns to come later in the year, He said his bureau would work more closely with the departments of industry and commerce, IPR, customs, culture, quality inspection and copyright in fighting crime.
Guangdong police have made huge strides in combating IPR infringements in recent years thanks to a number of special campaigns, He said.
In September, police in Shenzhen cracked the city's largest ever piracy case, seizing more than 4.9 million pirated CDs, VCDs and DVDs valued at more than 10 million yuan (US$1.3 million). The raid on an underground production base and warehouse in the city's Bao'an District led to the detention of three suspects.
A similar case occurred in the city of Zhongshan in December, which led to the detention of 38 suspects. On that occasion, police closed two production lines and seized 2,600 parent DVDs and CDs and more than 800,000 copies.
In Guangzhou on October 28, police busted a fake medicine operation, closing three "Viagra" production lines and seizing large quantities of the fake drug worth more than 10 million yuan.
Twenty-four people were detained.
In June 2006, Shenzhen police raided 15 counterfeiting operations, seizing more than 10.97 million fake trademark items, 100,000 empty plastic bottles for Procter & Gamble products and 11 items of production. Police detained six suspects.
P&G Company estimated the crackdown helped the US company retrieve more than 100 million yuan in lost revenue.
Since 2006, Guangdong police have cracked a total of 479 IPR infringement cases and seized 915 suspects.
"Cracking open these cases, which had a total value of 414 million yuan, dealt a heavy blow to those involved in IPR infringement here," He said.
Also since 2006, Guangdong police, in cooperation with the local tobacco monopoly administration, has raided 585 fake cigarette production bases, seizing 275 items of production equipment.
In all, 557 suspects were detained, 459 of which were given jail terms.
Late last year, the Ministry of Public Security and the State Tobacco Monopoly Administration jointly awarded Guangdong provincial bureau of public security a special award for its contribution to fighting fake cigarette production in China.
(China Daily April 26, 2007)