Gang mass-producing duplicate Gundam models busted

Since January last year, the suspects have allegedly produced and sold 230 million yuan (US$34 million) worth of duplicate Gundam models on the Internet and in street shops.

Nine suspects have been detained for allegedly producing and selling 230 million yuan (US$34 million) worth of duplicate Gundam models since January last year, Shanghai police said on Sunday.

Police said the gang sold the duplicates under the brand "Daban," and apart from the logo on the packaging, all other content was extremely similar to the original Gundam products.

Police in Changning District said they started their investigation after receiving a report in July from the Japanese toy maker which produces the Gundam models and kits and holds their copyright. The Japanese company's Shanghai office is located in the district.

The duplicates were sold in several Internet and street shops in Shanghai, as well as Zhejiang and Guangdong provinces, at half the price of authentic ones, police said.

They were found to be produced by a toy maker located in Shantou City, Guangdong.

With the assistance of police in Guangdong and Fujian provinces, all of the nine suspects were caught in Guangzhou and Shantou cities of Guangdong, Zhangzhou City of Fujian, and Cangnan County of Zhejiang on August 16.

Changning police

The factory in Guangdong where the duplicates were produced

Changning police

A shop selling the duplicates.

During the raid, police discovered 56,000 duplicate Gundam models.

Since January 2017, the gang mass-produced 27 replica Gundam models at the Shantou factory, and then packed them up in a toy factory in Zhangzhou, police said.

The duplicates were then delivered to sales agents in Guangzhou and Cangnan who sold them on the Internet and in street shops, according to police.

The nine suspects could face the criminal charges of infringing copyright and selling duplicates which infringe copyright.


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