FIVE Alicante City mobile phone stores that sold fake and potentially dangerous products have been raided by the Policia Nacional.

The shop owners have been arrested as the simultaneous visits uncovered 3,300 counterfeit items with a retail value of €160,000.

The raids were the second phase of an operation that started last year when Alicante-based distributors and wholesalers were visited by the police.

Thousands of fake phone-related products were discovered in the first police sweep.

The bogus items included chargers, cables, phone cases, headphones, and batteries.

They were earmarked for distrubution to phone shops around Alicante and across the Costa Blanca.

Besides the counterfeiting aspect, experts assessed the gear and concluded that a lot of it did not reach the required safety standard and could cause a fire or an explosion.

Police said that the branded copies were barely distinguishable from genuine items, therefore easily fooling any purchaser.

Crucially the first set of raids uncovered details of where exactly the fakes were going to.

That information led to the second co-ordinated series of six shop visits, with all bar one of them selling the counterfeit accessories.

Some of the businesses sold the goods online via their own websites or via popular sales platforms.

Five people have been charged with selling counterfeit goods.

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