Investigation Customs + Police
The company's products (food) are widely counterfeited. Several illicit industries are located in Russia. Part of combating this situation, Vlasta-Consulting is conducting a large-scale program against counterfeiting, by collaborating with police and customs.
Challenge / Opportunity
One of the customs posts, with which previous cooperation had been established in the framework of exchanging contact data and training for signs of counterfeit products, notified of the detention of a truck with empty containers for the target products.
The products did not contain the applied specification and, therefore, could not be recognized as counterfeit and subject to seizure. The documents for the supply of the specified products were assigned to a shell company, and could not be used for investigation.
At the same time, there was no doubt that the good were intended for delivery to an illegal production facility.
Given the information above, a meeting was held with the Economic Crime Unit, resulting in the following approved action plan:
  1. Customs releases most of the products, removing only the part not reflected in the documents.
  2. ECU employees carry out a series of activities aimed at identifying the final address of the container delivery (illegal production).
  3. As part of this plan, the ECU is coordinated in several federal districts. Vlasta-Consulting acted as a coordinator and provided information support.
As a result, the police established the alleged address of the illegal production, located in the southern region at a considerable distance from large residential areas.
In support of police measures, Vlasta-Consulting employees were sent on an urgent business trip and 12 hours after receiving information on the preliminary location of the facility, they were already on site.
The location of the illegal production was preliminarily confirmed by Vlasta-Consulting employees.
After the arrival of the container at the production facility and completion of several preparatory measures, the police initiated a raid and stopped the illegal production. Both finished products and a huge number of labels, lids and containers were seized, including the one that was originally released by customs.
As a result of a complex of measures carried out by the joint forces of customs and the Department of Economic Crimes and coordination with Vlasta-Consulting, illegal production was successfully detected and suppressed.
An alternative would have been the seizure by the customs of the detained packaging, but, due to the lack of specifications on it and the impossibility of calculating the damage, most likely the products would have been returned to the violators. In this case, the opportunity would have been missed and the identification of the production address would not have been possible.