72. Counterfeit Production and Use

People who are involved in the production and sale of counterfeit items, such as currency, art, clothes, ‘blood diamonds’, illegally harvested ivory, etc., should be charged with the theft of an equivalent number of authentic items at full-price. For example, if 1,000 pieces of counterfeit pants are produced and sold, and the authentic item sells for $20 in the stores, the counterfeit producers should be charged with the theft of $20,000 ($20 x 1,000 units) and ordered to pay a punitive multiple that would be decided by the courts. Equipment used in the production of the counterfeit items should be liquidated first to pay the imposed fines. Then any additional fine amounts that are still outstanding should be required to be paid by the criminals. For counterfeit operations that total at least an estimated $25,000 per year, then any transportation equipment used to facilitate the production, shipping or marketing of such counterfeit items should be liquidated to pay off this amount. Market prices should determine the amount that is received for such liquidated goods and the criminals would be required to find the buyers. The government may possibly survey the ultimate buyer quickly to make sure that such equipment is not planned for further illegal use. If the equipment is only valuable for counterfeit production, then the government should not allow its resale and its market value would be zero. In exchange for the forced liquidation of their transportation vehicles, criminals should be given the opportunity to pay 200% of the estimated market value of their vehicle(s), instead.

The production of imitation uniforms or uniform parts (including badges, etc.) should be prohibited. No person should be allowed to wear real or fake uniforms unless they are employed at a place that requires the use of uniforms. The purpose is to prevent people from posing as police officers or phone or gas company employees and thereby gain entry to a home to steal or do other damage or harm. True employees at organizations that require uniform and who use them to facilitate the committing of a crime should be charged an extra penalty because of the deception. Soldiers who are not really soldiers should be prohibited from wearing authentic soldier uniforms.

‘Spoofing’ telephone numbers, email addresses or the manipulation of any other information to mislead or conceal it’s true origin or the falsification of any other true characteristic should all be illegal and heavily penalized.

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