Manufacture, Sale, or Possession of Counterfeit Goods

Penal Code Section 350

You might think the term “counterfeit” only refers to fake currency, but California Penal Code section 350 defines another form of counterfeiting: knowingly using a logo or design (a “mark”) to sell knock-off products. The most common form of counterfeit goods (using a mark) are cheap items of merchandise that are altered to look like original high-end name brand goods. These goods will have a copy or reproduction of the original logo (such as Armani, Nike, Adidas). Like counterfeiting money, selling a counterfeit mark is a crime with serious legal consequences.

If you are accused of manufacturing or selling a counterfeit mark, a Los Angeles criminal defense attorney from our law firm can help you. Call our office now for a free case consultation!

Proving a Counterfeit Mark Case

In order to obtain a conviction, the prosecutor must demonstrate:

  • The defendant knowingly created, intended to sell, or possessed with intent to sell, a counterfeit mark;
  • The defendant acted as a business entity or an individual; and
  • The “mark” is officially registered with the Secretary of State or U.S. Principal Registry / Trademark Office.

The prosecution cannot bring a valid case against you without these elements. However, a conviction can lead to serious penalties, such as incarceration and fines. If the alleged offense involved products that would normally cost more than $950, or the offense involved more than 1,000 units of the item, the prosecution may charge the crime as a felony punishable by up to three years in jail. In cases involving less than 1000 units, with a value under $950, the crime is charged as a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in county jail.

The “Mistake of Fact” Defense

This strategy refers to any situation where the defendant did not knowingly sell or create the counterfeit. Without showing the defendant was aware of the crime, the prosecutor cannot obtain a conviction. If, for example, you unknowingly purchased a counterfeit bag and tried to resell it, you could not face criminal penalties because you assumed the mark was authentic.

Contact Stephen G. Rodriguez & Partners

Contact our Los Angeles counterfeit defense lawyers to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation regarding your case. We have more than 70 combined years of legal experience – let us use it to help you avoid a conviction! All of the lawyers at our law firm are passionate, experienced, and highly skilled. If you’re facing a serious criminal accusation under California Penal Code section 350, speak with a representative from our firm at your earliest convenience.