The investigation began looking into the sale of counterfeit Ford products, mainly made for transit vans. The goods were being sold on two of the biggest online market places and available to buy worldwide.
In a report from Ford, it was confirmed that the car parts had not been produced to any safety standard and could potentially cause serious injuries.
On Tuesday 04 May 2021, officers from the City of London Police’s Intellectual Property Crime Unit attended the residential address of a 42 year old man in the Milton Keynes, area. While searching the address, officers uncovered counterfeit car parts that police believe were going to be advertised as real and sold online. These included key fobs, exhaust temperature sensors, transit door logos, brake pedal covers and fuel filters.
The 42 year old man, who police believe is the company director, was arrested and cautioned at Milton Keynes Central Police Station while investigations continue.
Detective Constable Daryl Fryatt, from the City of London Police, who led the investigation said:
"This operation is an excellent example of PIPCU working collaboratively with the motor industry to tackle the sale of counterfeit goods.
"Not only could these parts pose a potential safety risk to those who have them fitted to their cars, they also undermine the legitimacy of the motor industry.
"We strive to identify and disrupt those who are intent on making money out of counterfeit goods, working closely with our partners to identify and take action against those who commit these crimes."
Jess Owens, Ford’s European brand protection manager, said:
“Ford operates a global team of experts in the fight against counterfeit goods, that not only impact heavily on the sale of genuine goods but also on jobs and customer satisfaction. The safety aspects of untested unapproved parts bearing a Ford trademark or sold as genuine parts when they are not may put the consumer at a level of unnecessary risk. Ford will continue to support the Police and other authorities in the battle against counterfeit parts.”