Friday, May 29, 2009

Illinois State House and Senate Pass Bill to Strengthen Penalties for Counterfeiting

Illinois State’s House and Senate recently passed an anti-counterfeiting bill (SB 1631) which strengthens penalties for those possessing, selling, marketing and transporting counterfeit goods. The bill was a collaborative effort between Senate Majority Whip Ira Silverstein, House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang, the U.S. Chamber, the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, the International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition (IACC), and the International Trademark Association (INTA).

Counterfeiting and piracy costs the U.S. economy approximately $250 billion annually and exposes consumers to potentially harmful products. SB 1631 would impose criminal sentences for counterfeiting of up to 20 years with additional fines of up to $15 million depending upon the level of the offense. The legislation also requires mandatory forfeiture and destruction of counterfeit goods and requires restitution to victims.

We at XStream Systems commend the Illinois' legislative branch in passing this bill to protect its citizens against counterfeits. In addition to strengthening penalties for offenders, we encourage regulators to be proactive in improving supply chain and regulatory processes which act to interdict counterfeiting as a whole.

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