This is becoming a common occurrence, which is a good thing:
Chinese police, working with US law enforcers, uncovered a major transnational criminal case of manufacturing and exporting fake international brands and arrested 73 suspects.
The police has [sic] confiscated over 20,000 counterfeit bags branded as Louis Vuitton, Hermes or Coach, closed 37 illegal sites for the production and sale of such bags, and found that the suspects have manufactured and sold more than 960,000 such fake bags, the Ministry of Public Security said in a statement Sunday. (Xinhua)
So these were counterfeits manufactured in Guangdong and exported to the U.S. (among other places). The illegal activity at issue was trademark infringement, and the authorities involved included the PRC Public Security Bureau and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Not only was property seized and individuals arrested, but there was also online activity here that was stopped.
This kind of joint task force covers all the bases and is typical of how law enforcement is dealing with international counterfeiting these days. Moreover, this was a fairly large group that had manufactured a large number of infringing bags. This ring was substantial and therefore worth the time and effort of the authorities, both here and in the U.S.
As I’ve said before, I wonder if we will see, sometime in the future, a situation where most of the large-scale infringers out there are rolled up by the police, leaving only a scattering of de minimis wrongdoers who are simply too small to go after. I definitely see that happening with small websites that offer downloads of copyrighted works but whose traffic is insignificant. We might see the same dynamic with counterfeiters.
In the meantime, expect to see more large-scale joint enforcement cases.