A woman from Crawley Down has pleaded guilty to selling fake branded clothes on Facebook following an investigation by West Sussex Trading Standards.
Amanda Mary Bryant, of The Leas, Crawley Down, was sentenced to a one month custodial sentence suspended for six months and was made to forfeit 54 pairs of counterfeit trainers.
Trading Standards first became aware of Bryant in April 2017 when they received a complaint that someone was selling counterfeit goods on Facebook under the name Lucy Brown.
Items included Nike trainers, Stone Island coats and Ralph Lauren tops.
Further investigation revealed that Lucy Brown had created her own business on Facebook called Bargain Brandz.
Officers carried out a test purchase on a pair of Nike trainers which were later confirmed as fake.
When officers searched Bryant’s address, they discovered 54 pairs of fake Nike trainers which she was would have sold for £2,700.
Richard Sargeant, Trading Standards Team Manager, said: “Selling counterfeit goods is a crime which deceives customers and takes business away from genuine sellers.
“We would encourage anyone who believes they have been sold a counterfeit product to contact us.”
Debbie Kennard, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Safer, Stronger Communities, said:
“Deceiving buyers through the sale of counterfeit merchandise is a serious offence, hurting both innocent buyers and legitimate businesses.
“I hope this outcome serves to deter others who might be tempted to sell fake, branded items in West Sussex.”
Anyone with information about counterfeit goods can contact Trading Standards online at www.westsussex.gov.uk/tsreport or via Citizens Advice on 03454 040506.
Langley Green man sent to prison after more than £13k drugs found in his home
A Crawley man found with nearly £13,500 worth of drugs in his home has been given a prison sentence.
Police conducted a warrant at the address of Matthew Stevens in Dobson Road, Crawley, after reports from members of the public regarding suspicious behaviour in the area was reported.
During the search on 15 July 2016, officers found a quantity of cocaine, spice and drug paraphernalia. Stevens, 44, was then arrested.
He was released under investigation and the Crawley Investigation team began a long and complex analysis of items seized from the address.
Stevens was charged in May 2017 and pleaded not guilty to possession with intent to supply class A (cocaine), possession of a class B and possession with intent to supply a psychoactive substance (spice).
He stood trial at Hove Crown Court and on Friday 2 November Stevens was found guilty by a jury and sentenced to a total of four years.
Detective Constable Mark Buckley said:
“Sussex Police work tirelessly to stop the supply of illegal drugs within our community.
“The presiding Judge recognised the severity of Stevens’ actions and imposed a sentence representing that.
“We are conscientiously robustly tackling drug issues in Crawley and urge anyone who notices any suspicious behaviour to report it to us without delay.
“Let’s work together to make Crawley a safe place. No one knows their neighbourhoods better than residents themselves, so please get in touch if something seems out of place.”