Ealing Council’s trading standards team and the police have netted more than 21,000 counterfeit Bollywood DVDs which were due to be sold in Southall over Diwali and Eid.
The massive haul, worth up to £80,000, included DVD and CD copies of some of the latest Bollywood blockbusters, such as Bunty Aur Babli, Lage Raho Munnabhai and Rocky, as well as classics like Sholay.
On a tight schedule (19 films to see and finally select the winning film) the International Jury was introduced to each other on 8th February to get a head start on their gruelling 10 day movie marathon.
They were found after a raid on a home in East Ham, on 17 October. Courier and air-freight boxes from the Far East were also found, suggesting that the films had been imported.
A man who was at the house during the raid was arrested and charged for trademark breach offences.
Councillor Will Brooks, cabinet member for environment and transport, said: “This was yet another successful raid by our trading standards team and the police.
“These dodgy copies were going to be sold at shops in Southall so our raid will mean the unsuspecting public won’t end up getting ripped off.
“Protecting the public and making our communities safer is one of the council’s top three priorities.”
The raid in east London was carried out after a major investigation by Ealing Council’s trading standards team in partnership with the police’s Safer Neighbourhoods Team for Southall Broadway.
Councillor Brooks added: “Unfortunately, we seem to be regularly seizing hauls of this size and in a way it is no longer a surprise.
“This shows the scale of the problem we are up against but we will continue to do everything we can to catch these criminals who are conning the public and harming the Bollywood film industry.”