Rogue trader faces jail after selling fakes

Part of the haul of fake goods seized from Michael Reeder by Portsmouth City Council
Part of the haul of fake goods seized from Michael Reeder by Portsmouth City Council
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A MAN who sold fake gadgets online he bought from China has been convicted of 13 offences after an 18-month investigation.

Michael Reeder, 35, of Carbis Close in Port Solent, was convicted on March 19 after Portsmouth City Council’s trading standard team’s ‘most complex and difficult’ investigation.

A series of raids found he had more than 3,500 counterfeit items.

Customers had complained to the council, Sennheiser and Monster about items bought from Reeder’s Odds and Pods website.

They noticed mistakes on packaging and technical faults, including buzzing and poor quality sound.

Two students, a Bristol school which had bought a batch of headphones from Reeder, and a man who bought headphones for his child at Christmas all gave evidence.

Reeder denied 13 offences under the Trade Marks Act but was found guilty of all 13.

He will be sentenced at Portsmouth Crown Court on April 17 and faces a fine of thousands of pounds or jail.

A court hearing on June 21 will look into confiscating cash.

The council’s trading standards manager Peter Emmett said: ‘This has been the most complex and difficult investigation ever undertaken by the team, producing more than 2,000 pages of evidence.

‘We’ll ask the court to order refunds for customers who gave statements about the fakes they purchased.’

The first raid in February 2011 saw trading standards officers seize more than 2,000 items, including fake Monster and Sennheiser headphones and Apple accessories.

In August 2011 Reeder told officers he was no longer trading but a seizure of fake Monster headphones at East Midlands Airport led investigators to his new online store, Nice Cans.

Further raids in September 2011 saw officers seize more than 1,500 items including more fake headphones, Playstation controllers and Wii accessories.

He imported the goods through a non-authorised supplier in China, whose authenticity he did not check.

Camilla Herron, global brand protection manager with Monster USA, flew to the UK to attend the trial for two of the six-day trial and thanked the council.

Reeder was already subject to a court enforcement order taken out by the council in 2009, after he did not supply goods on time or give refunds.