More than $1 billion in fake goods were recovered during a counterfeit goods seizure in a raid of a storage facility in Manhattan by Homeland Security and the New York Police Department (NYPD) this past week.

In a statement to the media, the Homeland Security special agent in charge, Ivan J. Arvelo, said that “one purse might seem harmless, but the production and sale of imitation products is far from a victimless crime.”

This was the largest counterfeit goods seizure in history – about 219,000 fake handbags, shoes, clothes and other accessories – poised to enter the market at the beginning of the holiday shopping season.

Buying counterfeit goods on the New York streets has long been an issue, with some consumers seeking out the knockoffs to get a less expensive lookalike of a designer item.

NYPD Commissioner Edward Caban emphasized how seriously authorities view counterfeit trafficking, saying that it “harms legitimate businesses, governments, and consumers.”

Arvelo went on to say, “We will not allow opportunists to convert public warehouses into their own illegal shopping centers, or to wreak havoc on the streets of New York City, nor will we relent in our efforts to combat transnational criminal organizations smuggling these items through our borders.”

If convicted, the two men arrested in the raid and charged with trafficking in counterfeit goods will face a maximum of ten years in federal prison.