Counterfeit goods worth over EUR 33 million seized


Name: Operation Pirates 1

Crime Area: Intellectual property crime and counterfeit goods

Action day: 9 to 19 May 2023

Participating countries: Belgium, Bulgaria, Czechia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Serbia

Participating organisations: CELBET (Customs Eastern and South-Eastern Land Border Expert Team), EUIPO (European Union Intellectual Property Office), Frontex (European Border and Coast Guard Agency), OLAF (European Anti-Fraud Office), PSI (Pharmaceutical Security Institute)

Overview: Operation Pirates 1 is a global operation to thwart smugglers of counterfeit goods such as pharmaceutical products, garments (clothes and accessories), cigarettes, cosmetics and electronic devices, toys etc. focused on physical inspections on land and sea borders. 


  • 810 995 counterfeit products (clothes, footwear, bags, wallets, belts, sunglasses, accessories, perfumes, electric bikes, watches, jewellery, pharmaceutical products, e-liquid for cigarettes, etc.)
  • 61 246 counterfeit electronic devices
  • 7.8 million counterfeit cigarettes 
  • 250 kg of cannabis
  • 59 firearms

Europol’s contribution: Europol supported the joint action day by deploying a specialist to the operational centre set up at Frontex.