Police impound 184 000 fake pens
Tendai Rupapa Senior Court Reporter
Police in Harare have intercepted several cartons containing 184 000 counterfeit Eversharp 15M ballpoint pens worth close to US$40 000 that were being sold to unsuspecting customers by a Chinese company.
The pens, which were said to be sub-standard, were being distributed by Lamhill Trading (Pvt) Ltd.
The packaging of the counterfeit pens was similar to that of the original Eversharp 15M brand and the pens were also similar to the original ones.
A Chinese man named Faxin (61) appeared before Harare magistrate Mr Tendai Mahwe yesterday facing charges of contravening the Trademark Act, “selling or importation of service with forged registered trademark”.
According to the State, Art Corporation Ltd is the only firm authorised to hold the Eversharp trademark and anybody who purports to use the name will be in violation of the Trademark Act.
Mr Mahwe heard that Lamhill Trading (Pvt) Ltd would lie to consumers that they were selling original Eversharp 15M pens.
Faxin was remanded out of custody to July 30 for trial and was represented by Harare lawyer Mrs Gamuchirai Musandirire-Dzitiro.
The State had initially asked the court to remand Faxin in custody pending verification of his residence status.
Prosecutor Mr Michael Reza later called an immigration official, Mr Godffrey Kondo, who confirmed that Faxin’s residence papers were in order.
The complainant in the matter was Eversharp (Pvt) Ltd represented by Mr Kiriboni Moyo, the company’s safety, health, environment and quality superintendent.
Mr Reza said Mr Moyo received a phone call from a client on July 4 this year who had bought substandard ballpoint pens labelled as Eversharp 15M from Lamhill Trading (Pvt) Ltd.
In a bid to verify the client’s complaint, Mr Moyo went to the shop and bought a box of 50 Eversharp 15M counterfeit ball- point pens.
He tested the pens and discovered that they had the same features as those produced by his company, but were substandard.
On July 10, Mr Moyo went to another shop owned by Lamhill Trading and bought four boxes of the Eversharp 15M pens which he also discovered were imitations.
He checked the boxes and discovered that they had the same business address as theirs, the court heard.
The matter was reported to the police and 46 boxes containing 184 000 counterfeit Eversharp 15M pens worth US$36 800 were recovered from shops and warehouse.