FBI seizes counterfeit Tiffany jewelry and packaging

Federal law enforcement agents seized counterfeit Tiffany & Co. jewelry in a raid of several stores in lower Manhattan Thursday, including knock-offs of some of Tiffany’s best-known jewelry designs, according to a statement from the New York-based jeweler and specialty retailer.

The stores identified in the raid are Enddi Silver, and Starglam.com Inc. The statement adds that other, unidentified locations were involved in the raid. In addition to counterfeit jewelry, FBI agents also confiscated counterfeit packaging, including boxes and bags bearing the Tiffany & Co. trademark in Tiffany’s signature blue shade. The man believed to be the owner of Enddi Silver was arrested during yesterday’s raid and arraigned in Brooklyn federal court late yesterday afternoon.

The FBI is working in conjunction with the United States Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn based on complaints from Tiffany.

In addition, Yaniv Shamir and Nadine Vargas, the proprietors of Starglam.com Inc., a Web site that allegedly sold counterfeit Tiffany jewelry obtained from Enddi Silver, among other places, were arrested earlier this week as part of the investigation that led to Thursday’s raid.

In December, the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn raided Starglam, which did business through eBay under the seller name “Tiffanyplus” and its own Web site www.starglam.com, allegedly selling a variety of counterfeit rings, necklaces, and bracelets to consumers. In addition to supplying counterfeit merchandise to Starglam in New York, Enddi is alleged to have distributed counterfeit Tiffany merchandise to other parts of the country, including Ohio, where local authorities there seized counterfeit merchandise supplied by Enddi in another raid conducted last December.

In its statement, Tiffany says it “deeply appreciates the government’s action to protect the public and Tiffany from these fraudulent activities. The Tiffany & Co. name is a symbol of the finest design and highest quality, and Tiffany & Co. is committed to maintaining its reputation and protecting its loyal customer base from such duplicity.”