NIWOT, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Crocs, Inc. (NASDAQ: CROX) today announced that Chinese courts have sentenced eighteen individuals to a total of more than 46 years in prison for producing and selling counterfeit Crocs goods. Seventeen individuals were convicted of counterfeiting, and two of the 17 also were convicted of offering bribes. An 18th individual also was convicted on bribery charges in connection with production of counterfeit Crocs™ shoes. In addition to prison sentences, the above men together with another two face fines totaling RMB 2,832,500 (approximately $450,896). Nearly 128,752 pairs of counterfeit Crocs products valued at roughly RMB 60,000,000 (approximately $9,550,690) were seized as part of these recent investigations.
“If you attempt to produce or sell infringing Crocs products, we are going to find you and take definitive action to protect our intellectual property,” said Dan Hart, chief legal and administrative officer for Crocs. “The lengthy prison terms and heavy fines handed down in these cases show that Chinese authorities are very serious about assisting us to eradicate the production of counterfeit Crocs products in China, and so are we. We will not tolerate counterfeiters compromising our brand, and will continue to work with the authorities to hunt down and prosecute anyone who uses Crocs’ name, design or other intellectual property without permission.”
The cases were tried by the Shanghai Yangpu District Court and the Dongguan City No. 1 District Court. Decisions were made between March 13 and September 27, 2012.
“The sentences and fines associated with these cases are encouraging and reflect the vigor with which the authorities prosecuted these matters,” said Sara Hoverstock, Crocs regional general counsel for Asia. “As we continue to monitor and take action against counterfeit activity, we recognize the important role of the Chinese authorities and appreciate their support.”
Through September 2012, more than 600,000 pairs of counterfeit Crocs shoes have been confiscated through factory raids and customs seizures in China. This has resulted in 35 criminal actions, mainly in Guangdong, Shanghai and Fujiang Province.
About Crocs, Inc.
Celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2012, Crocs, Inc. is a world leader in innovative casual footwear for men, women and children. Crocs offers several distinct shoe collections with more than 300 four-season footwear styles. All Crocs™ shoes feature Croslite™ material, a proprietary, revolutionary technology that gives each pair of shoes the soft, comfortable, lightweight, non-marking and odor-resistant qualities that Crocs fans know and love. Crocs fans "Get Crocs Inside" every pair of shoes, from the iconic clog to new sneakers, sandals, boots and heels. Since its inception in 2002, Crocs has sold more than 200 million pairs of shoes in more than 90 countries around the world. The brand celebrated reaching $1 billion in annual sales in 2011.