HOUSTON — Falcons fans, Patriots fans and football fanatics of all kinds are gearing up for the big game on Sunday. But if you're planning on buying any new gear to commemorate Super Bowl LI, you better be careful.
Harris County Constable Alan Rosen is telling people, "Do you're due diligence. Make sure you're buying things that are authentic."
Local law enforcement are partnering with federal agencies as part of a crackdown on counterfeit NFL merchandise.
"The items that you're buying that are pirated are not the same quality," Rosen said.
Houston police arrested four people charged with trademark counterfeiting and accused of selling pirated goods from stores in west Houston.
Nationwide, the feds have seized an estimated $20 million worth of fake sports merchandise. In the past year, "Operation Team Player" began immediately after Super Bowl 50, seizing more than 250,000 pirated items and arresting more than 50 people.
Constable Rosen said supporting counterfeit merchandise can bankroll other criminal enterprises.
We all want Super Bowl LI to be a good game. So make sure you don't get gamed when you're buying your goods.