Import Bans for Counterfeit Products Increased for the Third Consecutive Year Last Year, Including Fake Shohei Ohtani Jersey

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Items seized by customs last year, including a fake jersey of baseball player Shohei Ohtani at the Finance Ministry on Monday.

The number of counterfeit branded products imported in 2023 and stopped by customs nationwide for intellectual property infringement increased for the third consecutive year, the Finance Ministry said Friday.

According to the ministry, the number rose by 19.7% compared to the previous year to 1,056,245 items, the first time in four years that it has exceeded one million items since 2019.

There were 31,666 cases regarding intercepted counterfeit items, with over 90% being trademark infringements such as counterfeit branded products. With the spread of online shopping, the number of cases of individuals importing counterfeit branded products and other items has reportedly increased.

Among the counterfeit items seized was a fake jersey of Shohei Ohtani, who was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers in December last year.