Scott Sutton, formerly of Newfield Road in Hagley, opened a unit in The Pavilions at Birmingham on Christmas Eve 2014 and lured customers in with branding identical to that used by the iconic Australian boot maker, plus an eye-catching 70 per cent discount offer.
He sold pairs at £50 each − all cash purchases as Sutton rejected card payments − during a four-day sales spree before officers acted on concerns raised by a city centre PCSO to move in and close the shop down.
Inquiries were made with Ugg’s brand protection and legal advisors − who confirmed the store wasn’t legitimate − and officers traced several customers tricked into believing the boots were genuine.
They included one 15-year-old girl who parted with her Christmas cash after being told by a sales assistant the boots were genuine but could be sold at knock-down prices as ‘they weren’t made at the real Ugg factory’.
Sutton was behind the till on December 27, 2014 when police swooped and in interview claimed he hadn’t committed a criminal offence and that it was a matter for trading standards.
However, West Midlands Police investigators eventually secured three charges of unauthorised trademark use against the 49-year-old.
Sutton admitted the offences and at Birmingham Crown Court on May 2, was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay £980 in costs. He faces being jailed for three months if he fails to pay the fine.
Police seized £7,000 in cash from Sutton’s car while 100 pairs of Ugg boot fakes were recovered from the Pavillions store.
Sutton refused to name the supplier.