Pirate CD gear found in lorries
CUSTOMS officers have seized compact disc presses - believed to be bound for underground mainland factories - capable of producing 40,000 pirate CDs a day.
Department chiefs said yesterday the $15 million seizure justified their crackdown on copyright piracy, and launched a fresh attack on the United States' decision to add Hong Kong to its piracy watchlist.
Intellectual Property Investigation Bureau chief Calvin Leung Ho said the impoundment of the European-made CD presses showed cross-border determination in stamping out the industry.
Mr Leung attacked Friday's decision by the US Trade Representative's Office to upgrade surveillance of the territory amid fears that piracy in Hong Kong had worsened.
A mainland tip-off led officers to the machinery, hidden behind a thin wall of polyester yarn in two container lorries at the Lok Ma Chau border checkpoint.
'We have been co-operating with our Chinese colleagues to establish how strong the Hong Kong connection is,' said Mr Leung.
The equipment was thought to have been destined for a 24-hour, seven-days-a-week production line manufacturing pirate software, music and game CDs.
The lorry drivers, mainlanders aged 40 and 45, were charged under import and export laws.