DuPont Refrigerants worked with law enforcement in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), playing an instrumental role in a significant seizure of counterfeit DuPont SUVA refrigerants in Sharjah.
DuPont became aware of the counterfeit refrigerant goods sold and stored by Sunrise, a refrigerant trader, through a preventive program of the Dubai Department of Economic Development (DDED). DuPont learned that the trader stored his goods in the neighboring emirate of Sharjah. Inspectors from the Sharjah Department of Economic Development (SDED) alerted a DuPont representative in the UAE of a third-party complaint filed against Sunrise Air Conditioning Spare Parts Trading Co., Ltd. As a result of this complaint, DuPont and the SDED worked jointly to determine if the refrigerants being stored by the trader and bearing the DuPont brand name were genuine DuPont refrigerant products.
The investigation confirmed that these were counterfeit refrigerant cylinders carrying the trademarks DUPONT and SUVA, as well as trademarks of another major manufacturer. A seizure resulted in confiscation of 3,100 units of fake DuPont SUVA 134a refrigerants and 6,000 units of fake product from another manufacturer. The seized goods were stored and guarded at Sunrise Airconditioning Spare Parts Trading LLC facilities by guards employed by DuPont, under the authority of local law enforcement.
As a consequence of the counterfeit activity, Sunrise Airconditioning Spare Parts Trading LLC was required to a pay a fine to the UAE Government for the crime committed, and was required to make additional payments to cover costs related to storage of the seized goods, painting and repackaging the cylinders without the DuPont trademarks, and exporting them as unbranded refrigerant. This trader is no longer in business.
“We're approaching the problem of counterfeit refrigerants very aggressively,” says Greg Rubin, global business manager, DuPont Refrigerants. “Counterfeit refrigerants can cause significant business impact including equipment failure and more importantly can cause physical harm or loss of life.”
DuPont has developed a multi-faceted program to address counterfeit refrigerants including education of customs officials and deployment of overt and covert tactics to ensure the authenticity of DuPont refrigerants.
“We will continue our global effort to combat counterfeit refrigerants by working diligently with law enforcement in all regions,” Rubin adds. “We will prosecute these cases to the fullest extent of the law. We encourage our customers to buy refrigerant from a reputable, known supplier, and if suspicious activity is observed in the marketplace, to contact DuPont directly.”