VENTURA : Man Cited Over Sale of Fake Guess Shirts

A private investigator who travels the fair circuit in search of big-name trademark impersonators spotted a Los Angeles man peddling fake Guess sweat shirts for $10 each at the Ventura County Fair over the weekend, authorities said.

Louis Perez, 46, was cited on suspicion of selling false trademark clothing and could face up to 90 days in jail or a maximum $600 fine, said Detective Jeff Killion of the Ventura Police Department.

The sweat shirts, which were factory rejects allegedly sold to Perez at a discount, bore logos resembling the Guess Inc. trademark of a triangle with an inverted question mark, investigator Stephen Lawrence said.

Lawrence, a former officer with the Ventura Police Department and an Ojai native, represents about 60 trademark holders such as Gucci and Coca-Cola and sends his five investigators to search for products that aren't the real thing.

"You don't buy Rolex watches at swap meets," he said.

If a counterfeiter is found guilty, sweat shirts and other products are destroyed, he said.

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