AUSTIN (KXAN) - Whether it's fake designer purses or pirated movies, Austin police can now spend more time fighting counterfeit crimes.
The Department of Justice recently awarded Austin Police Department a $200,000 federal grant – the same grant amount as last year -- to combat the purchase and sale of counterfeit and pirated products
Last year's grant allowed detectives to make approximately 40 busts, including one where police arrested two men accused of selling copied CDs and DVDs at a flea market in East Austin.
Police have also busted people selling fake designer purses and sunglasses. While finding counterfeit items isn't the challenge, the real challenge is tracking down the distributor.
"Sometimes they're getting the product locally, and by locally I mean Texas or the United States, and then you've got other cases where they're getting them from overseas so it all depends on the quality of the product and what they're willing to pay for it," said Sgt. Jerry Sullivan.
According to the Justice Department, fake products might seem like a small crime but in some cases, these activities are used to fund dangerous or even violent criminal enterprises and organized crime networks.
The San Antonio Police Department was also awarded the same grant.
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