An independent company in Northumberland has been prosecuted and fined over £15,000 for supplying counterfeit car parts.

Northumbria Ltd which trades as ‘4D’ and is based in Seaton Delaval was taken to court following an investigation in which they were found to be supplying counterfeit oil and air filters.

The company was selling the counterfeit goods made in Poland and Turkey to garages in the north-east on the basis that they were genuine Citroen and Peugeot parts, Northumberland County Council’s Trading Standards service found.

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The company, whose director is Ellie Wilkes, pleaded not guilty to six offences under the Trademarks Act 1994.

The case was tried at NewcastleMagistrates' Court where the company was found guilty of all six offences.

The company was fined £10,000 and ordered to pay a total of £5,638.70 costs with a £181.00 victim surcharge.

The court also ordered forfeiture and destruction of the counterfeit parts seized by officers during the investigation.

These goods had a street value of around £5,000 putting the overall penalty levied to Northumbria Ltd at over £20,000.

Northumberland County Councillor, Colin Horncastle, cabinet member with responsibility for community services, said :“This prosecution should serve as a warning to any other traders or individuals considering selling counterfeit goods.

"This will not be accepted in Northumberland and our Trading Standards team are vigilant in ensuring that this kind of activity is actively monitored and robustly enforced.

Philip Soderquest, the council’s head of housing and public protection said: “We will not hesitate to investigate and prosecute traders who cause consumers and other businesses to be misled or disadvantaged by the sale or supply of counterfeit goods.

"The quality of such items is often far inferior to that of the genuine article where significant care is taken during the manufacturing process to ensure it meets relevant safety and quality standards.”

A spokesperson for Stellantis, which produces genuine filters for Citroen and Peugeot cars, said: “We would like to thank Trading Standards at Northumberland County Council for their prompt and complete support in this matter.

“Product quality is a byword for Stellantis and its employees. As such, any threat to the safety or quality of our products is taken very seriously and will be investigated, with all necessary actions taken.”

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