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Consumers urged to avoid fake products

MAKE-UP laced with paint stripper, boots made from dog skin and perfume containing urine are among the fake goods seized by police in Scotland.

Experts are urging people to be aware of the dangers of fake products and to refuse to buy illicit foods, alcohol, fashion, medicines and beauty goods.

Counterfeit goods and the criminal gangs that trade in them are the focus of a major conference bringing together police, trading standards and industry.

Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill and representatives of US Homeland Security, Interpol and Europol were among the speakers at the Scottish Anti-Illicit Trade Summit in Edinburgh yesterday. Mandy Haeburn-Little, director of summit organiser the Scottish Business Resilience Centre, said: "Everyone loves a bargain. But people need to stop to think about the true cost of fake goods. Can you be confident that those cheap cigarettes, perfumes and alcohol are actually safe?

"However, it goes much deeper as those products are likely to have supported child labour or human trafficking.

"Illicit trade also hurts businesses in Scotland hard. People choosing bargains at markets, car boot sales or on the internet impacts hugely on retailers and manufacturers - less genuine goods being sold closes businesses and puts people out of work."

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