Feds raid flea market for fake cosmetics

June 21, 2011 2:55:36 PM PDT
Federal agents carried away boxes of counterfeit goods from a Bucks County flea market on Tuesday as part of an investigation into fake cosmetics.

Local police, along with customs enforcements agents from homeland security, raided half a dozen booths at Rice's Flea Market in Solebury Township.

Private Investigator Stuart Drobny, who works undercover for manufacturers, helped identify the bogus name-brand cosmetics that were seized.

"If it's not made up to specifications, there's a lot of potential for bad makeup and bad cologne," Drobny said.

One vendor, who would only say his name is Mike, had some of the name brand makeup he sells seized.

"We knew some of it might not be real, but the majority of what we bought was from legitimate sources," Mike said.

"It's potentially dangerous, and I know a couple stories of people who've gotten rashes from putting counterfeit perfumes on," said vendor Vicki Cychowski. She went on to say that it is not hard to spot the fake stuff.

"The colors of the boxes are different and, a lot of the time, you can tell the color of the liquid is the wrong color," she said.

"We tell the vendors they are not allowed to sell counterfeits and if they do they get in trouble," said Chuck Kane, the GM of Rice's Market. "Today is a perfect example of that."

Vendors who were identified on Tuesday were given warnings and, if they are caught again selling fake makeup, they'll be arrested.