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Fraud and Anti-Counterfeiting Conference talks pill presses, borders and more


September 29, 2019
By Renée Francoeur
Renée Francoeur

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Lorne Lipkus. Photo: R. Francoeur

The numbers when it comes to fraud and counterfeits keep growing, said Lorne Lipkus of Kestenberg Siegal Lipkus LLP Barristers and Solicitors, kicking off the 24th Annual Fraud and Anti-Counterfeiting Conference in Toronto earlier this month.

“We’re not fighting with other crimes anymore,” he continued. “Counterfeiting is the No. 2 method of financing now for organized crime and terrorists. Only drugs are ahead of us. I was shocked because I know people gamble and we have a problem with prostitution—I always thought fraud and counterfeits would never be ahead of them. So that’s shocking and why we need to do more.”

The conference hosted a number of roundtables on enforcement, technologies and more.

A panel of experts discussed how for less than $500, an individual with ill intent can purchase a pill press and a counterfeit pill mold that allows them to turn cheap, easily available, unregulated ingredients into a six-figure profit.

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“We’ve seen counterfeit pills in the past but not to the magnitude we are today,” said Dan Zsido, the national education and training director with NADDI (National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators) in the U.S.

Another session centred on borders and the international, national and local co-operation that can keep the flow of counterfeits out. Attendees heard more on specific case studies that illustrated effective programs, as well as the information that customs officers prefer to assist them in knowing what targets are the most desirable. The Request for Assistance (RFA) application, which helps the Canada Border Services Agency identify and detain counterfeits, was also examined.

Other topics included online fraud, the new frontiers with Canadian money, creative tactics involving fraud and how law enforcement and industry can work together to “get the job done,” just to name a few.