Group calls for crack­down on piracy, fake goods

Most of 2007 re­port’s rec­om­men­da­tions not im­ple­mented

Ottawa Citizen - - CANADA - ROBERT HILTZ

If a piracy and coun­ter­feit­ing re­port to be re­leased Tues­day re­minds MPS of some­thing they’ve seen be­fore, it should — the rec­om­men­da­tions were first put for­ward in March 2007.

Postmedia News has learned the Cana­dian Anti-coun­ter­feit­ing Net­work will be re­leas­ing a list of rec­om­men­da­tions to crack down on fraud­u­lent goods — from mu­sic to auto parts and even to med­i­ca­tion — with only mi­nor changes from the pre­vi­ous it­er­a­tion be­cause the govern­ment has fol­lowed through on few of the group’s pro­pos­als.

Ac­cord­ing to John Cot­ter, chair of the CACN — a lobby group of pro­po­nents, in­clud­ing re­tail­ers and pro­duc­ers — the govern­ment, de­spite tak­ing some small steps for­ward, still needs to do more.

“In gen­eral terms, and there are a cou­ple of ex­cep­tions, the var­i­ous rec­om­men­da­tions in the ini­tial road map still stand to­day.” Cot­ter said. “The prob­lem hasn’t gone away, in fact the coun­ter­feit­ing and piracy prob­lem has grown (since 2007).”

The is­sue was high­lighted in Au­gust when bor­der agents — along with the RCMP — were able to nab a ship­ment of fake Win­nipeg Jets jer­seys, less than a month af­ter the team un­veiled the sweaters.

The CACN’S first re­port in­cluded 16 rec­om­men­da­tions, in­clud­ing broader pow­ers for po­lice and cus­toms of­fi­cials, tougher laws against piracy and im­pos­ing fines on im­porters and re­tail­ers of fake goods.

A May 2007 re­port is­sued by a par­lia­men­tary com­mit­tee of­fered sim­i­lar rec­om­men­da­tions, Cot­ter said. Even with the added weight of the sec­ond re­port, few of the changes were im­ple­mented.

“Re­sources are re­quired for law en­force­ment and oth­ers to be able to ef­fec­tively en­force the ex­ist­ing laws and the new laws that are needed,” he said.

Cot­ter said one of the most im­por­tant things the govern­ment needs to do is to give bor­der agents in­creased power to seize sus­pect goods at the bor­der. Cur­rently, cus­toms agents don’t have the abil­ity, where many coun­tries, such as the United States, do.

“If you can stop it from com­ing into the coun­try, you don’t have to deal with it down­stream ... rather than it get­ting bro­ken up and dis­trib­uted to who knows how many dif­fer­ent peo­ple, and re-sold.”.

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