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HMRC internal manual

Customs Intellectual Property Rights Guidance

Counterfeit currency, protected coins, printing plates and dies: The scope of the prohibition

Importation and exportation of counterfeit currency notes and protected coins, without the authority of the Treasury, is prohibited under Sections 20 and 21 of the Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981 and such items are liable to forfeiture under CEMA Section 49(1)(b) - for imports and Section 68(1) - for exports. They may therefore be detained under Section 139(1).

While there is no specific prohibition on the import of plates and dies and other equipment capable of producing counterfeit currency or coins, possession of such items without lawful purpose, is counter to Section 17 of the Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981. Such items should therefore be detained and further advice taken as to their disposal. See 7050.