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Intellectual Property Rights
01/23/2014

2 operators of west Texas mall kiosks plead guilty to trafficking counterfeit goods

MIDLAND, Texas – Two brothers, who operate six kiosks at a local mall, pleaded guilty Wednesday to trafficking in counterfeit goods.

This guilty plea resulted from an investigation conducted by special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Raja Zafar Iqbal, 41, and Javed Iqbal Raja, 50, both from Odessa, Texas, face a maximum sentence of 10 years in federal prison.

In federal court, Raja Zafar Iqbal admitted to trafficking in counterfeit goods from January 2001 to September 2013. According to court records, between November 2008 and September 2013, Raja Zafar Iqbal, operated the following Music City Mall kiosks in Midland, Texas, with assistance from Javed Iqbal Raja: Gold-N-Silver, ICEE Jewelry, Jewel Time, Pretty-N-Sassy, Famous Stars and Straps, and Right Jewelry.

During that time frame, the defendants knowingly sold counterfeit jewelry, watches, buckles, key chains, lanyards, and other items. The counterfeit goods bore trademarks identical to or substantially indistinguishable from trademarks owned by companies, such as: Angry Bird, Fox Head, Monster, Nike, Playboy, Polo Ralph Lauren, Chanel, Juicy Couture, and others.

The defendants admitted they were not authorized to sell or distribute any of the goods bearing these counterfeit trademarks.

On Sept. 5, 2013, HSI special agents arrested Raja Zafar Iqbal and Javed Iqbal Raja, executed search warrants at their kiosks, and seized more than 300 counterfeit items.

Both men are released on bond pending sentencing. No sentencing date has been scheduled.

Related charges in this case are still pending against Muhammad Asif Raza, 33, a third defendant in this case formerly of Odessa, Texas.

The FBI also participated in this investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Austin Berry is prosecuting these cases.