DHS seizes nearly $100 million in fake goods leading up to Super Bowl

NFL warns fans to not buy paper tickets from scalpers as all official tickets are digital

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Friday, February 11, 2022
NFL and DHS crack down on counterfeit goods ahead of Super Bowl
The Department of Homeland Security has seized nearly 100 million dollars in fake goods leading up to the Super Bowl as NFL and law enforcement crack down on counterfeit goods

INGLEWOOD, Calif. (KABC) -- The Department of Homeland Security has seized nearly $100 million in fake goods just a few days before Super Bowl 56 at SoFi Stadium.

"Within the last 48 hours, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's counterfeit and piracy enforcement team, along with our partners at Homeland Security Investigations, and Customs and Border Protection, we've recovered over $5 million of counterfeit merchandise," Lt. Geoff Deedrick of the L.A. County Sheriff's Department said.

Law enforcement also recently nabbed counterfeit Super Bowl merchandise from a store in L.A. The NFL is issuing a warning, asking fans to check that all merchandise comes from official lenders.

"Don't put yourself at risk," NFL Intellectual Property Counsel Bonnie Jarret said. "Buy authentic NFL merchandise and tickets from established retailers and trusted sources. Beware of phony online ads for products and tickets, whether they're on websites, social media or marketplace listings. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."

Official licensed NFL jerseys, headwear, and T-shirts must have an NFL hologram affixed directly to the fabric or on a hangtag connected to the garment. On the inside of hats, one can find the official NFL seal stitched into the liner.

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The NFL and law enforcement officials also warn fans to not buy tickets from scalpers surrounding the arena on game day.

"That would be horrific," Deedrick said. "This year, for the Super Bowl, there are no paper tickets, so anyone walking around the stadium, or on the adjoining streets trying to sell a ticket, it is a counterfeit and it is a fake. So please do not buy a ticket on the streets in and around SoFi stadium."

NFL Senior Counsel Michael Buchwald reiterated the best way to purchase tickets to the game is to go through official ticket vendors.

"To ensure a ticket is reputable, buy only from reliable reputable sources, like the ticket exchange on location, or other ticket resale sites in the NFL ticket network or established ticket retailers that you can trust," Buchwald said.