3 detained for producing fake paint

Updated: 2011-08-26 08:08

By Cao Yin (China Daily)

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BEIJING - Three men suspected of making and selling fake paint in the outskirts of this city have been detained and are likely to face stiff punishments in the future, an official with the district's public security bureau said on Thursday.

The three men are suspected of turning a room they were renting into a factory churning out the fraudulent products, which they are believed to have kept in two storehouses in Beijing's Fangshan district. For more than eight months, they supplied the fake paint to hardware stores, said Han Xiujie, spokeswoman for the public security bureau in the area.

"They used empty cans from popular paint brands, such as Nippon and Dulux, and fake raw materials," she said. "The price of their paint was only 20 yuan ($6) a can, which was much cheaper than the real stuff, which costs about 170 yuan at the market. They could sell as many as 300 cans a day."

The three suspects have all been detained and more than 2,000 cans of fake paint have been confiscated. The police first learned about the fake paint from a Beijing Times reporter. They caught the suspects on Tuesday, she said.

"The industrial and commercial departments in the district have confirmed that this paint is counterfeit," she said. "That will be important evidence in the trial."

The police have meanwhile begun investigating the landlords who are suspected of renting out the room where the alleged factory was established.

A police officer who declined to give his full name said the fake paint will eventually be destroyed.

Tang Hongxin, a Beijing-based lawyer in the Yingke Law Firm, said anyone who is convicted of selling two-million yuan or more worth of fake goods will spend at least 15 years in prison.

"The suppliers of the factory and storehouses should share some of the responsibility for this if they knew the suspects were making fake products," he said.

Until recently, more than half of the paint stores in the Jingkai Market had sold fake paint that came from Wang Tingjie, the principal suspect in the case, according to Beijing Times.

Liu Junhai, vice-chairman of the China Consumers Association, said it is difficult for customers to distinguish real paint from the fake stuff.

"Most people have no knowledge about paint and tend to buy products with lower prices," he said. "That is how those suspects were able to make fake paint and cheat their customers."

"Fake paint contains many substandard chemical materials that are very dangerous to people's health, especially to their respiratory systems and organs."