Teams of consumer affairs inspectors have launched a nationwide crackdown after discovering that a company in Hanoi had been engaged in passing off counterfeit Chinese appliances as European.
The products included gas ranges, electric stovetops, ovens and blow dryers.
Romal Vietnam distributed the goods via online portals, local supermarkets and shopping centers in many cities and provinces, according to the National Steering Committee for Combating Smuggling, Commercial Fraud and Counterfeit Goods (aka Committee 389).
The Committee has instructed relevant agencies to inspect Romal Vietnam’s branch outlets and its products nationwide.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Public Security has summoned the company's director, Nguyen Thi Ninh, and her husband Nguyen Huy Tho for questioning.
On January 22, relevant agencies raided a Romal Vietnam retail shop in Hanoi and seized about 185 Chinese products that had been slapped with counterfeit German and Italian labels.
A subsequent raid of its branch office in the central city of Da Nang led to the seizure of 85 products for the same reason.
Soon afterward, Ho Chi Minh City police sealed a Romal store after the manager locked its doors and fled.
A police source told Thanh Nien that Ninh, Tho and their employees have admitted that the company has imported Chinese products from Zhongshan Company in Guangdong since 2008.
The company, which relabeled the products as of European to net a considerable markup, has imported them in high volume to earn hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, according to the source.
A Committee 389 official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Romal Vietnam imported the product for VND3-4 million apiece and marked them up to VND15-16 million using the fake labels.
The Ministry of Public Security is investigating the case.