APAA e-Newsletter (Issue No. 31, October 2022)

Thailand: IP Infringement Ends in Destruction Ceremony

Praewpan Hinchiranan, Baker McKenzie (Bangkok Office) (Thailand)

The Department of Intellectual Property held a destruction ceremony of goods infringing Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) on 26 August 2022 at the Anti-Aircraft Artillery Regiment 1 in Don Mueang, Bangkok. The ceremony was presided over by the Deputy Minister of Commerce, Mr. Sinit Lertkrai.

The infringing goods destroyed in this ceremony were counterfeit goods seized during interceptions at various Customs ports, and those seized by the Royal Thai Police and the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) during raids throughout Thailand. In total, 404,985 items of infringing goods were destroyed, including apparel, leatherwear, footwear, watches, mobile phones, computers, cosmetics and auto parts. Of those destroyed, 124,561 items had been seized by the Customs Department, 93,945 items by the Royal Thai Police, and 186,479 by the DSI. The total value of such items was approximately THB 173 million (around USD 4.8 million). In comparison to the destruction ceremony in 2021 that was held online via Zoom due to the outbreak of COVID-19, the amount of infringing products from the final cases dropped by roughly 165,000 items from more than 570,000 items last year.

The infringing goods were strictly secured and guarded by the officials during transport from various warehouses throughout Thailand to the destruction ceremony where they were shredded and crushed, prior to being transferred from the ceremony site to an incineration facility. Destruction of the infringing goods prevents them from returning to the market or being exported to other countries for sale, while holding the destruction ceremony in public helps raise awareness of the downside of engaging in any infringing activities in relation to counterfeit goods. The ceremony was organized in a fully transparent and environmentally friendly manner, with full access and participation by the media, IPR owners and/or representatives, members of diplomatic corps and representatives from government agencies.