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Police Raid Chinese Company Making Not-Quite Legos

$30M in knockoffs seized at factory
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 28, 2019 10:50 AM CDT
Children play inside a panel between the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square models made of Lego bricks, on display at a newly opened Legoland Discovery Center in Beijing last week.   (AP Photo/Andy Wong)
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(Newser) – A raid on a factory in China last week discovered $30 million of fake Legos, the BBC reports, and more than 630,000 finished products were seized. Police, who posted photos of building blocks that looked a lot like Legos, said the toys had been copied from Lego blueprints. At the invitation of the government and police, Lepin said its Shenzhen factory is suspending production on its 10 assembly lines, per NPR. Four people were arrested in the raid, and police said they're still investigating.

Lepin calls most of its sets "compatible with Lego" and sells them for much less than the real thing. The company's website, for example, had its Star Wars Millennium Falcon kit priced at $313.30; the genuine Lego kit runs $799.99. China has been working to strengthen intellectual property rights, per the BBC. A Lego China official told the official Xinhua news agency that the safety of the products could also be of concern. (Read more Lego stories.)

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