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A Systematic Analysis of Product Counterfeiting Schemes, Offenders, and Victims, 43 states and 42 countries, 2000-2015

Resource Type
Dataset : administrative records data, aggregate data, event/transaction data, text
  • Sullivan, Brandon A.
Other Title
  • Archival Version (Subtitle)
Publication Date
Publication Place
Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research
Funding Reference
  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. National Institute of Justice
Free Keywords
Schema: ICPSR
electronics; food industry; intellectual property; offenders; pharmaceutical; product counterfeiting; victims
  • Abstract

    These data are part of NACJD's Fast Track Release and are distributed as they were received from the data depositor. The files have been zipped by NACJD for release, but not checked or processed except for the removal of direct identifiers. Users should refer to the accompanying readme file for a brief description of the files available with this collection and consult the investigator(s) if further information is needed. Product counterfeiting is the fraudulent reproduction of trademark, copyright, or other intellectual property related to tangible products without the authorization of the producer and motivated by the desire for profit. This study create a Product Counterfeiting Database (PCD) by assessing multiple units of analysis associated with counterfeiting crimes from 2000-2015: (1) scheme; (2) offender (individual); (3) offender (business); (4) victim (consumer); and (5) victim (trademark owner). Unique identification numbers link records for each unit of analysis in a relational database. The collection contains 5 Stata files and 1 Excel spreadsheet file. Scheme-Data.dta (n=196, 35 variables); Offender-Individual-Data.dta (n=551, 16 variables); Offender-Business-Data.dta (n=310, 5 variables); Victim-Consumer-Data.dta (n=54, 8 variables); Victim-Trademark-Owner-Data.dta (n=146, 5 variables); Relational-Data.xlsx (4 spreadsheet tabs);
  • Abstract

    This study developed a Product Counterfeiting Database (PCD) as a source of data on product counterfeiting schemes, offenders, and victims assembled from open source information.
  • Methods

    Schemes were coded in the Product Counterfeiting Database (PCD) and had to meet specific inclusion criteria. First, the scheme involved illegal activities related to counterfeiting of trademarked physical goods and/or packaging.; Second, the scheme was carried out in identifiable locations during a specified time period (as opposed to a vague allegation). Schemes are typically committed over a prolonged period of time and involve multiple locations inside and often outside U.S. borders.; Third, the scheme (or any portion of it) was committed in the U.S. and led to a criminal indictment in a U.S. court between 2000 and 2015. ; Scheme-Data.dta Schemes, the main unit of analysis, represent the overall operation of the crime and components to carry it out. Schemes are characterized by specific offenders (i.e., individuals and businesses), criminal activities and techniques, objectives, locations, time periods, and victims (i.e., consumers and owners). Offender-Individual-Data.dta An individual offender is anyone who was indicted in a U.S. court for their participation in activities related to, or in furtherance of a product counterfeiting scheme meeting the Product Counterfeiting Database (PCD) inclusion criteria. Individual offenders fulfilled a wide array of different roles, including production, import from foreign suppliers, distribution, warehousing/storage, tampering, repackaging, relabeling, theft (for resale), direct sale to consumers (including usage of counterfeit drugs on patients) and support roles such as bookkeeping and laundering money, among others. Offender-Business-Data.dta Business offenders simply needed to be involved in the commission of the scheme and not necessarily indicted to be included. A business offender was a legally recognized business organization which was 1) designated to provide goods/services to customers; 2) owned/operated by at least one offender (indicted or unindicted co-conspirator) involved in the scheme; and 3) had some role in the preparation or execution of the scheme. Victim-Consumer-Data.dta Individual consumer victims are defined as individual consumers directly harmed as a result of a product counterfeiting crime scheme. Victim-Trademark-Owner-Data.dta Trademark owning victims are defined as those trademark owners directly harmed as a result of a product counterfeiting crime scheme. Losses include monetary, damage to brand reputations, loss of customers and contracts, and costs of brand protection, litigation, and enforcement. Relational-Data.xlsx The relational data details how files (and variables) are associated or related to each other.
  • Methods

    Data file: Scheme-Data.dta (n=196, vars=35) Researchers gathered public information on attributes of counterfeiting schemes, including industry involved, length of scheme in years, number and type of victims, amount of illicit revenue generated from scheme, countries outside the U.S. linked to scheme, and several variables related to indictments, convictions, incarcerations and attributes of the investigations. Data file: Offender-Individual-Data.dta (n=551, vars=16) Researchers gathered information on individual offenders including age during scheme, sex, race/ethnicity, citizenship status, conviction and incarceration, sentencing, and deportation/fugitive status. Data file: Offender-Business-Data.dta (n=310, vars=5) Researchers collected public data on whether the business was a shell company, whether the business was owned/operated by the indicted individual offender, and whether the business itself was indicted or convicted for involvement in the scheme. Data file: Victim-Consumer-Data.dta (n=54, vars=8) Researchers collected public data on the victim's age, sex, race/ethnicity, citizenship status, the type of counterfeit product that victimized the consumer, whether the victim was physically harmed by the scheme, and if the victim had an interpersonal relationship with the offender. Data file: Victim-Trademark-Owner-Data.dta (n=146, vars=5) Researchers collected public data on the number of schemes that victimized the trademark owner, the type of industry, whether the trademark owner was a multinational business, and the estimated monetary losses to the trademark owner. Data file: Relational-Data.xlsx Researchers created four tabs, one each for Offender-Individual-Data, Offender-Business-Data, Victim-Consumer-Data, and Victim-Trademark-Owner-Data listing the locations of each scheme (the United States and 42 foreign countries). The tabs also contain references to relationships between the ID variables for each of the four datasets.
  • Methods

    Presence of Common Scales: Not applicable
  • Methods

    Response Rates: Not applicable
  • Abstract


    • DS1: Dataset
Temporal Coverage
  • Time period: 2000-01-01--2015-12-31
  • 2000-01-01 / 2015-12-31
  • Collection date: 2017-01-01--2018-12-31
  • 2017-01-01 / 2018-12-31
Geographic Coverage
  • Alabama
  • Arizona
  • Australia
  • Bahamas
  • Belgium
  • Belize
  • California
  • Canada
  • China (Peoples Republic)
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Costa Rica
  • Cuba
  • England
  • Finland
  • Florida
  • France
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hong Kong
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • India
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Kuwait
  • Latvia
  • Lebanon
  • Louisiana
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Mexico
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Netherlands
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • New York (state)
  • New Zealand
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pakistan
  • Palestine
  • Panama
  • Pennsylvania
  • Puerto Rico
  • Rhode Island
  • Russia
  • Saudi Arabia
  • South Africa
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Thailand
  • Turkey
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Utah
  • Venezuela
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
Sampled Universe
Product counterfeiting crime schemes, offenders, and victims where an individual offender was indicted in a United States court. Smallest Geographic Unit: State
Not applicable
Funding institution(s): United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. National Institute of Justice (2016-R2-CX-0052).
One or more files in this study are not available for download due to special restrictions; consult the study documentation to learn more on how to obtain the data.
Alternative Identifiers
  • 37177 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
  • Is previous version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR37177.v1

Update Metadata: 2019-05-28 | Issue Number: 2 | Registration Date: 2019-05-28

Sullivan, Brandon A. (2019): A Systematic Analysis of Product Counterfeiting Schemes, Offenders, and Victims, 43 states and 42 countries, 2000-2015. Archival Version. Version: v0. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.