charnsitr /
25 September 2014Trademarks

Factory selling counterfeit football gear shut down

A factory that made counterfeit football merchandise using trademarks belonging to Arsenal and Manchester United has been shut down following a swoop by UK police.

The factory, in Lincolnshire, was found to be producing thousands of counterfeit items which should now be destroyed, a court heard yesterday (September 24).

The raid on the factory took place after items were seized from a stall on a nearby market. The stall owner told officials he was working for 54-year-old Michael Ashby.

Ashby’s farmhouse in Louth, Lincolnshire was then raided.

Other established trademarks his business was forging included those belonging to football teams Everton, Hull City and Celtic, as well as merchandise bearing the logos of Star Wars, Doctor Who and mobile phone game Angry Birds.

The items produced included posters, clocks and cigarette tins.

Ashby was charged with six counts of using a trademark illegally and five counts of offering the items for sale, following the raid in May last year.

He admitted all 11 charges at Boston Magistrates Court, where it was demanded that the 2,396 items seized should now be destroyed.

Due to the severity of his crimes, Ashby will be referred to a crown court for sentencing, according to the East Lindsey Target news website.

A time for sentencing will be announced at a later date.

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