$1.3 million worth of fake AirPods seized in Cincinnati

AirPods Pro
AirPods Pro (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • U.S. Customs has seized $1.3 million worth of fake AirPods.
  • Customs in Cincinnati uncovered over 6,000 pairs of AirPods and AirPods Pro from China.

U.S. customs seized over 6,000 pairs of fake AirPods in Cincinnati last week, in a haul that would have been worth $1.3 million by Apple's valuation.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection stated that Cincinnati officers seized five shipments of counterfeit AirPods, with a value (had they been real) of over $1.3 million.

The report states:

On July 7, officers inspected five shipments of headsets from China and found what appeared to be 5,000 fake Apple AirPods and 1,372 fake Apple AirPods Pro. Officers referred all shipment information, including photographs, to CBP import specialists at the Centers of Excellence and Expertise (CEE) to verify authenticity of the merchandise and to confirm possible trademark violations. The CEE determined all the AirPods were in violation of CBP trademark and copyright codes, and the shipment was declared seized on July 11.

The shipment contained over 5,000 pairs of fake AirPods and over 1,300 fake pairs of AirPods Pro. To prove just how fake the headphones were, whilst the manufacturers suggested retail price (MSRP) of the goods was over $1.3 million, the actual value of the shipment according to its manifest was $312 per pallet, totalling about $1,800.

Earlier this month it was reported that U.S. customs was seizing record numbers of fake AirPods and wireless headphones over the last nine months. The department has repotedly seized over 360,000 pairs at a total "street" value of $62 million, in 2019 it caught only $3.3 million.

You can get Apple's AirPods from as little as $119 thanks to the prices in our round up of best AirPods deals.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9