An El Sobrante woman has been arrested and charged after investigators found counterfeit designer goods for sale in her store in San Francisco’s South of Market neighborhood, San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon announced this week.
Sarah Chong, 58, was arraigned Monday afternoon on a charge of possessing counterfeit goods for sale at a store in the GiftCenter & JewelryMart at 888 Brannan St., according to the District Attorney’s Office.
Chong, who is out of custody on $15,000 bail, pleaded not guilty and was ordered to return to court on Sept. 29 for a prehearing conference.
Chong was arrested July 5 following an investigation by San Francisco police and the Department of Homeland Security.
According to court documents, a search of Chong’s store found hundreds of counterfeit items such as handbags, hats, scarves, belts, wallets, sunglasses and jewelry labeled with brand names such as Burberry, Dior, Coach and Gucci.
The seized items are thought to have a street value of more than $100,000 and would have had a value of more than $2 million if they were genuine, the documents state.
“Counterfeit goods weaken the intellectual property rights of designers,” Gascon said in a statement. “Consumers who are cheated out of authentic merchandise may not know that they bought a fake, and that means they often attribute defects in counterfeit goods to the genuine brand.”
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