INTERPOL leadership on coordinating action in South America against fake goods recognized by world industry associations

8 June 2011

PARIS, France – The role of INTERPOL’s Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) programme as a catalyst for cross-industry law enforcement action against transnational organized intellectual property crime throughout South America was recognized today in Paris by the member organizations of the Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group (GACG) Network when it presented an individual achievement award to Roberto Manriquez Carrasco, a crime intelligence officer based at the INTERPOL General Secretariat in Lyon, France for his coordination of Operation Jupiter V.

Carried out under the auspices of Operation Jupiter in partnership with the World Customs Organization (WCO), Mr Manriquez was the project manager of the fifth version of this year-long operation throughout 2010 which focused on the trade in fake goods in South America. It led to a series of interventions across 13 countries in the region and to the seizure of nearly eight million counterfeit products worth USD 207 million.

"This award recognizes the success of Operation Jupiter V which would not have been possible without the commitment and support INTERPOL received from hundreds of police, customs officers and other Intellectual Property crime investigators in member countries who made a determined and sustained effort to work together to disrupt the activities of the criminals at the centre of these illicit activities," said Mr Manriquez.

INTERPOL has worked closely with the authorities in South America since 2005.  Since its inception, Operation Jupiter has resulted in almost 1700 arrests and in seizures of fake products valued at more than USD 507 million.

"Counterfeiting and piracy are transnational organized crimes which endanger the health and safety of often unknowing consumers. INTERPOL is committed to working closely with its 188 member countries as well as partner organizations worldwide to fight such crimes whenever and wherever they occur, and as always, working together with a common purpose is what makes a difference when combating organized crime," said INTERPOL Secretary General Ronald K. Noble.

John Anderson, Chairman of the GACG network of national and regional anti-counterfeiting organizations said: “This award highlights the wide range of cooperation that is required and provided by different individuals and organizations collaboratively working across the public and private sectors against the international trade in fakes.  It also reflects the importance of raising public awareness of this crime."

The role of partnerships was also a feature of the GACG company award made to Underwriters Laboratories (UL) for its outstanding achievement in combating counterfeiting and piracy.

Another key outcome from close working relationships against fake goods and piracy has been the establishment of the International IP Crime Investigators College (IIPCIC), a fully interactive online IP crime training facility for all law enforcement officers.  Jointly developed by UL University and INTERPOL, the online college has the capacity to train thousands of law enforcement officers in INTERPOL's member countries.