07/10/2022 13:58

Punishment for manufacturing and trading of counterfeit food or food additives in Vietnam

Punishment for manufacturing and trading of counterfeit food or food additives in Vietnam

Recently, the situation of manufacturing and trading of counterfeit food or food additives is very complicated, especially trading activities on the facebook. Will be activities lead to sentence of imprisonment?

The provisions of Clause 7, Article 3 of Decree 98/2020/ND-CP prescribing penalties for administrative violations against regulations on commerce, production and trade in counterfeit and prohibited goods, and protection of consumer rights include:

''1...

7. “counterfeit goods” include:

a) Goods whose uses are not consistent with their nature or names; the goods which are useless or whose uses are other than the announced or registered ones;

b) Goods of which one of quality indicators or basic specifications or the amount of primary substances contributing to their uses only reaches 70%, or less, compared to the minimum levels prescribed in technical regulations or quality standards registered, or announced, or specified in their labels or packages;

c) Counterfeit drugs defined in Clause 33 Article 2 of the 2016 Law on Pharmacy and counterfeit herbal ingredients defined in Clause 34 Article 2 of the 2016 Law on Pharmacy;

d) Veterinary drug or pesticide that does not contain any active ingredients; does not contain all of registered active ingredients; contains active ingredients other than those specified on its label or package; contains at least an active ingredient whose content only reaches 70%, or less, compared to the minimum level prescribed in relevant technical regulations or quality standards registered or announced;

dd) The good whose label or package containing information forging name or address of manufacturer, importer or distributor, forging registration number, declaration number or barcode of the good, forging package of good of another entity, or forging the origin of good or place of manufacturing, packaging or assembling;

e) Counterfeit stamps, labels and packages of goods."

Specific penalties for manufacturing and trading of counterfeit food or food additives are specified in Article 193 of the Penal Code 2015 of Vietnam as follows:

Article 193. Manufacturing and trading of counterfeit food or food additives

"1. Any person who manufactures or deals in counterfeit food or food additives shall face a penalty of 02 - 05 years' imprisonment.

2. This offence committed in any of the following circumstances carries a penalty of 05 - 10 years' imprisonment:

a) The offence is committed by an organized group;

b) The offence is committed in a professional manner;

c) Dangerous recidivism.

d) The offence involves the abuse of the offender's position or power;

dd) The offence is committed in the name of an agency or organization;

e) Counterfeit goods are trafficked across the border or between a free trade zone and the domestic market;

g) The counterfeit goods are assessed at from VND 100,000,000 to under VND 200,000,000 according to their selling prices, posted prices or prices on invoices;

h) The quantity of counterfeit goods is equivalent to an amount of genuine goods assessed at from VND 150,000,000 to under VND 500,000,000 if selling prices, posted prices or prices on invoices of counterfeit goods cannot be determined;

i) The illegal profit earned is from VND 100,000,000 to under VND 500,000,000;

k) The offence causes 31% - 60% WPI for a person;

l) The offence causes a total WPI of 31% - 60% for 02 or more people;

m) The property damage caused by the offence is assessed at from VND 100,000,000 to under VND 500,000,000;

3. This offence committed in any of the following circumstances carries a penalty of 10 - 15 years' imprisonment:

a) The counterfeit goods are assessed at ≥ VND 200,000,000 according to their selling prices, posted prices or prices on invoices;

b) The quantity of counterfeit goods is equivalent to an amount of genuine goods assessed at ≥ VND 500,000,000 if selling prices, posted prices or prices on invoices of counterfeit goods cannot be determined;

c) The illegal profit reaped is from VND 500,000,000 to under VND 1,500,000,000;

d) The offence results in the death of a person;

dd) The offence causes ≥ 61% WPI for a person;

e) The offence causes a total WPI of 61% - 121% for 02 or more people;

g) The property damage caused by the offence is assessed at from VND 500,000,000 to under VND 1,500,000,000;

4. This offence committed in any of the following circumstances carries a penalty of 15 - 20 years' imprisonment or life imprisonment:

a) The illegal profit earned is ≥ VND 1,500,000,000;

b) The offence results in the death of 02 or more people;

c) The offence results in bodily harm of 02 or more people, each of whom suffers from ≥ 61% WPI;

d) The offence causes a total WPI of ≥ 122% WPI for 02 or more people;

dd) The property damage is ≥ VND 1,500,000,000.

5. The offender might also be liable to a fine of from VND 20,000,000 to VND 100,000,000 , be prohibited from holding certain positions or doing certain works for 01 - 05 years or have all or part of his/her property confiscated.

..."

Therefore, the act of manufacturing and trading of counterfeit food or food additives may be subject to the highest penalty of life imprisonment. This is the punishment that shows the strictness of the Vietnamese law against this serious violation.

1. Judgment 160/2019/HS-ST dated December 17, 2019 on trading of counterfeit food or food additives

The summary of the case: "Le Thi L has rented kiosk No. 66, zone A, 1st floor of Market B in Ward L, City P, Ha Nam Province to sell groceries and dry goods since 2016. During the sales process, L met a woman named Y (unknown background) who offered to sell the monosodium glutamate (MSG), broth mix packed in the packages of famous brands, but the price was lower than the authentic import price of about 4,000 VND to 6,000 VND/pack. This woman said that some people bought MSG, seasoning powder from other brands by themselves and then put them in fake empty packages with pre-printed labels of famous brands such as Knorr, Ajinomoto. Seeing the price lower than the authentic product price, L bought the fake Ajinomoto and Knorr seasoning powder packages for sale mixed with genuine MSG and seasoning powder at her stall, the price of the fake product is the same as the genuine product."

Penalty: the Court declared defendant Le Thi L guilty of “Trading of counterfeit food and food additives”; sentence defendant Le Thi L to 27 months in prison, fully suspended, the probationary period is 54 months from the date of judgment of the first instance.

2. Judgment 41/2019/HS-ST dated July 24, 2019 on manufacturing and trading of counterfeit food or food additives

The summary of the case: "At the beginning of December 2018, KT went to My Tho market, Nam Dinh street, to buy 01 bag of 25kg Chinese noodles with 820,000 VND and empty packages with labels of Ajinomoto, Miwon, and Knorr with 250,000 VND from 02 women, not knowing their names and addresses, for the purpose of faking the seasoning and noodle package to make a profit. At around 4 o'clock on December 6, 2018, KT divided 25kg of Chinese noodles into packages labeled Ajinomoto and Miwon. He then divided the promotional seasoning from Nam Ngu fish sauce company and Neeptune cooking oil company into the packaging labeled Knorr and used a heat sealing press to make it look like the real thing. Using the method above, KT has faked 40 Knorr seasoning packages, 18 Ajinomoto noodle packages, 08 Miwon noodles packages."

Penalty: the Court declared defendant Do Van KT guilty of “Trading of counterfeit food and food additives”; sentence defendant Do Van KT to 24 months in prison, fully suspended, the probationary period is 48 months from the date of judgment of the first instance.

>> CLICK HERE TO READ THIS ARTICLE IN VIETNAMESE

Nguyen Sang
30


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