LAPD and Sheriff's dept. have made over 700 arrests in 5 years

The Los Angeles Anti-Piracy Task Force conducted “Operation Chimney Sweep,” the largest antipiracy raid in Los Angeles history, this holiday season, arresting 10 and seizing $4.06 million in counterfeit goods.

The task force comprised of officers and private industry investigators swept Los Angeles and seized goods from street vendors as well as from homes, including those with pirating equipment. The majority of offenders were in the downtown area. Recent opener “Tron: Legacy” as well as “The Tourist” and “Due Date” were among the most popular pirated titles, with all three pics still in theaters.

In the last five years, the LAPD and Sheriff’s department have made more than 700 arrests and seized $305 million in counterfeit goods combined. According to a report by the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp., counterfeit merchandise has cost L.A. County businesses $5.3 billion in lost revenue annually, plus $2 billion in losses for the retail sector.

“Counterfeiters are often involved in other, more dangerous illicit activities. Few realize that the money a consumer pays for a counterfeit product may very well be financing even more serious criminal activities — like gang crime,” said City Attorney Carmen Trutanich in a statement.

The LAPD created an antipiracy unit in 2004, and the Los Angeles Anti-Piracy Task Force was created in February 2007.

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