Court takes tough action against Kent counterfeiter

Lawrence Barratt, a 32-year-old from Chatham, Kent, was found guilty at Woolwich Crown Court on 8 December 2009 of bReaching the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 by manufacturing and selling counterfeit DVDs.

Barratt was sentenced to two years suspended imprisonment, plus 175 hours unpaid work requirement and ordered to pay £750 costs. The Judge also made a Section 18 Proceeds of Crime Act Order and a Forfeiture and Destruction Order in relation to seized evidence.

Bexley Trading Standards Officers observed Barratt and another individual on 29 July 2007 selling counterfeit DVDs and CDs at a local boot fair.

The following year, The Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT), passed information to Bexley Trading Standards about numerous websites that were selling counterfeit DVDs and which were eventually found to be run by Mr Barratt.

Later the same year, two Police Officers stopped a car driven by Mr Barratt. During a routine inspection of the vehicle, the officers found a holdall containing counterfeit DVDs.

Subsequent searches of properties linked to Barratt led to the discovery of 22 DVD burners, 600 DVDs, computers and inlay cards at premises in Firside Grove, Sidcup, Old Farm Avenue, Sidcup and Great Queen Street Dartford.

Mr Barratt appeared at Bexley Magistrates’ Court on 26 October 2009, where he pleaded guilty to four counts of making for sale counterfeit inlay sleeves. He was committed to Woolwich Crown Court on 10 November 2009 for sentencing and consideration of an application for a confiscation order.

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