The items, mostly copies of luxury objects, inside the little shop in downtown Manhattan are made of thin cardboard and might not even pass muster deep in the background of a movie set.
But that did not deter the police from arresting a shop worker on counterfeiting charges for selling several items, including Louis Vuitton and Burberry handbags.
There is just one problem: the items are supposed to be fake.
The store, Fook On Sing Funeral Supplies, on Mulberry Street along what is known in Chinatown as Funeral Row, sells traditional objects of mourning, mostly copies of luxury objects. The items are made of cardboard, paper and plastic, to be used at funerals as symbolic gifts for the deceased. The cardboard models are burned as part of traditional Chinese funeral practices.
The store sells a cardboard mansion for $400 and a cardboard flat-screen television for $40. There are stacks of money ($10,000 bills) for sale, as well as miniature sports cars, cellphones, double-breasted suits and even smiling dolls to act as servants in the hereafter.
“When people die, they feel they are going to need things in the next world,” explained one of the store’s owners, Amy Mak-Chan, who is the arrested man’s aunt. “They might want a car and a house and other nice things. People buy these things here, to give them as gifts at the funeral.”
A police spokesman on Wednesday would only offer information from the arrest report, including that the worker who was arrested on Tuesday, Wing Sun Mak, was observed offering to sell three handbags “that bore a counterfeit trademark Burberry” and one handbag that bore a fake Louis Vuitton insignia. He was also observed offering for sale four pairs of shoes and two outfits.
Mr. Mak said that a man in street clothes entered the store and seemed particularly interested in the handbags and loafers, obviously cardboard, that have print designs that vaguely resemble Louis Vuitton’s and Gucci’s.
“He asked me, ‘How much is this?’ ” recalled Mr. Mak, pointing to a handbag on display. “I said $20, and he pulled out his badge and said, ‘Are you selling this to me?’ And then he arrested me.”
I like to stick it to The Man, The Man happens to be Liberal in NYC(power Structure).