Two out-of-state men were jailed after state police said they found nearly $5,000 in counterfeit items during a traffic stop on the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Somerset Township.

Timakai A. Evans, 33, of New Jersey, and Gregory Makins, 40, of Columbus, Ohio, were pulled over Wednesday afternoon with a sport-utility vehicle filled with knockoff designer goods, police said.

“It was stuffed to the brim,” troopers said.

The men, traveling from Philadelphia to Columbus, were stopped for driving in the passing lane, police said.

Troopers said they seized fur coats, 50 pairs of jeans, 37 pairs of Timberland boots, 28 pairs of Nike Air Force shoes, 44 pairs of Nike Air Jordan shoes, and other name-brand items. Many of the goods originated in New York, troopers said.

The turnpike – considered a major drug pipeline to Pittsburgh and Ohio from cities along the East Coast – also has become a route for counterfeiters.

Companies in the United States lose $20 billion to $24 billion annually because of phony merchandise from China alone, published reports have said.

Makins was charged with trademark counterfeiting, a third-degree felony. Evans was charged with drug possession after troopers said they found small amounts of marijuana and hashish.

The suspects were arraigned by on-call District Judge Douglas Bell of Meyersdale and sent to Somerset County Jail.

Makins was held in lieu of $2,000 bond, and bond for Evans was set at $1,000.



Patrick Buchnowski can be reached at 445-5103 or pbuchnowski@tribdem.com.

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