Minister Richardson and Anguillan Attorney Fleming Lake Discuss Anti-Counterfeiting Efforts and Intellectual Property Protection
Philipsburg – The Honorable Minister of Justice Anna E. Richardson was paid a courtesy visit by Mrs. Keesha Fleming Lake, Attorney at Law from the Fleming Lake Group Inc. firm based in Anguilla.
Mrs. Fleming Lake has taken note that Minister Richardson has placed a high priority on enforcing counterfeit laws and is seeing to it that Customs Sint Maarten tightens its controls with imported products and merchandise into Sint Maarten.
During the courtesy visit, the discussion delved into what Sint Maarten imports, directly catering to Anguilla, as Sint Maarten is one of the main shopping stops for many Anguillans. The concern for Attorney Fleming Lake and Minister Richardson is not just about apparel, but what is consumed by residents.
“The work of Minister Richardson in bringing awareness to the importation, use, and consumption of counterfeit goods deserves commendation. The negative effects of the use of counterfeit products including food, medicine, and cosmetics are not isolated to Sint Maarten and can have an impact on our Anguillan community due to the ease of transporting goods between the islands. The health and safety risks should be of concern and should be addressed by awareness efforts throughout our community. It is my hope that by engaging in discussions with persons in our region like Minister Richardson, Anguilla will likewise ensure that our community is protected through anti-counterfeit efforts," stated Mrs. Fleming Lake.
Minister Richardson is gearing up to host the second annual Anti-Counterfeiting and Intellectual Property conference at the end of September of this year.
"The concerns regarding the production and sale of counterfeit products are gaining traction in our region. I'm truly elated that our initiative to finally tackle this subversive crime has captured such a great reaction from neighboring islands. The health risks associated with this form of crime are far-reaching. As a Kingdom, we are investing significant resources to combat human smuggling and trafficking, as many lives are lost in these dangerous journeys. It is known that trafficking, in particular, is often financed by subversive crimes such as the sale of counterfeit products. It is in our best interest if we combine our efforts to protect those among us who may not be fully aware of the dangers at hand," stated Minister Richardson.
Several territories in the region including Anguilla, are anticipating the upcoming conference to engage in this very important and serious discussion. Besides her concerns about how counterfeit products are hazardous to the health of our people, Mrs. Fleming Lake being an international attorney, is also focused on protecting the intellectual property rights of brand owners under her affiliate law practice, Complete Intellectual Property Services.