MANILA — Authorities confiscated at least P6.2 million worth of fake LEGO products as the government ramped up efforts against products that violate intellectual rights, the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) said Tuesday.
Over 2,000 boxes of fake LEGO products were seized by the National Bureau of Investigation's IP Rights Division last July in a mall in Mindanao, IPOPHL said in a statement.
The fake items are similar to the protected designs and images of Denmark-based LEGO brand, the agency said.
“With the sizable haul of the NBI-IPRD, we urge the public to take heightened caution in buying LEGO products and make sure that they transact only with legitimate LEGO stores and verified accounts on e-commerce platforms,” IP Rights Enforcement Office officer-in-charge Ann Edillon said.
Part of the problem, she said, includes consumers who are "willing buyers" of cheap and substandard goods. But fake products may pose danger to children, she added.
“The low price will always be an attractive selling point to any consumer. But wise consumers, especially parents, should always consider quality, durability and especially the safety of the toys and products their children use,” Edillon said.
The agency said it was working with LEGO to curb counterfeit products that did not undergo quality control and were manufactured under unsanitary conditions.
LEGO products are manufactured with children's safety in mind, LEGO Group’s IP Rights Corporate Legal Counsel for the APAC region Atty. Franklin Galman said.
“We cannot compromise a child’s safety; that’s why we go after copycats and counterfeits… We always respect and welcome fair competition, but when someone disregards our IP rights and abuses our consumers’ trust, we take the necessary steps to protect both our brand and our consumers,” Galman said.
“LEGO products are made of materials of the highest quality and we prioritize consumer safety. We want to ensure that parents and children who buy our toys, get a product of impeccable quality that lives up to the strictest safety standards,” he said.
The seized counterfeit product have similar LEGO A/S and LEGO Juris A/S marks.
LEGO A/S owns the copyright on designs and images appearing on LEGO products, while LEGO JURIS A/S owns LEGO marks such as the 3D minifigure, among others.
Fake products are considered IP-infringing goods under the Copyright Infringement and Unfair Competition provisions of the IP Code.