Thursday, May 26, 2005

Don't buy those fake bags and shoes in Chinatown!

For those of you who enjoy going to Chinatown to buy knock-offs of luxury items at ridiculously low prices, here's something to consider (from BNN's Washington Morning Update):
Terror Groups Raising Funds By Selling Counterfeit Goods In US.
The Los Angeles Times (5/26, Meyer) reports Los Angeles County Sheriff's Lt. John Stedman “and other experts told the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Wednesday” that “suspected U.S.-based operatives of Hezbollah and other groups accused of terrorist activity are raising as much as $30 million a year through the sale of counterfeit merchandise and other criminal enterprises in the United States, and sending unknown but substantial sums of it back home.” The Times notes, “Involvement by alleged terrorists in the thriving counterfeit goods trade also has caught the attention of the FBI, Treasury Department and Interpol, the global police agency, according to Matthew Levitt, a former FBI counterterrorism analyst.” Levitt said that “Hezbollah receives $20 million to $30 million a year from criminal fund-raising activities in the United States.”
Matt Levitt, of course, of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy-really cool, crazy smart, and very experienced.

Anyone still interested in that a $5 Louis Vuitton handbag?


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