By Michelle Graff
Miami--U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers seized a shipment of 1,200 counterfeit Tiffany & Co. bracelets this week at Miami International Airport.

CBP agents stopped a shipment of 1,200 fake Tiffany bracelets worth $2.85 million at the Miami airport this week.The jewelry was part of a shipment from China and marked another major jewelry seizure at MIA this year. Over the summer, CBP officers intercepted a shipment of 720 pieces of fake Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry worth more than $6 million.

If genuine and sold at MSRP, the Tiffany pieces--which were copies of various models of the retailer’s iconic .925 sterling silver “Return to Tiffany” bracelet--could have totaled as much as $2.85 million. 

In a news release, the CBP said it agents grew suspicious of the counterfeit bling because the bracelets “did not appear to be of the quality consistent with the products normally manufactured by the trademark holders;” in this case, Tiffany.

Import specialists with the CBP examined the bracelets more closely and determined that the bracelets were indeed counterfeit.

MIA Port Director Christopher Maston said the CBP has an “exceptional” team of officers and import specialists who work closely with companies like Tiffany to identify products that infringe on companies’ intellectual property.

Jewelry and watches by the industry’s best-known brands are among the world’s most copied goods and, last year, they were also the most seized in the U.S., surpassing even fake handbags.

A report from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security released in the spring stated that in 2014, CBP officials nabbed fake jewelry and watches worth a total of $375.4 million at retail, representing 31 percent of the total dollar amount of counterfeit goods seized all year.

Get the Daily News >
National Jeweler

Fine Jewelry Industry News

Since 1906, National Jeweler has been the must-read news source for smart jewelry professionals--jewelry retailers, designers, buyers, manufacturers, and suppliers. From market analysis to emerging jewelry trends, we cover the important industry topics vital to the everyday success of jewelry professionals worldwide. National Jeweler delivers the most urgent jewelry news necessary for running your day-to-day jewelry business here, and via our daily e-newsletter, website and other specialty publications, such as "The State of the Majors." National Jeweler is published by Jewelers of America, the leading nonprofit jewelry association in the United States.