A second Customs IP seizure has occurred in Indonesia. On Wednesday 7 October, Customs Officers seized 185 cartons containing 390,000 GILLETTE branded razors and 521,280 razor heads imported by PT. LBA from China. The seizure took place at Tanjung Emas, Semarang, on the north coast of Java. This seizure is a first for a foreign company as only a couple of foreign IP owners have secured Customs recordals under the new recordal system so far.
The seizure led to an application to the Semarang Commercial Court for a request for a temporary suspension of the goods, followed by a full physical examination at Tanjung Emas Customs. Witnesses from both the IP Office and P&G, owner of the Gilette brand, were present. Since the seizure consists of a significant quantity, it will most likely justify for civil action.
One of the challenges of the Indonesian Customs detention system is the legal formalities following a seizure. Not every IP owner can bring civil court proceedings as they are expensive and time consuming. Even filing a civil case can take a significant amount of time. There are technical deficiencies that will exist, given that cases would be filed by the local subsidiary instead of the IP owner.
It is unclear what kind of case is needed and what costs are to be justified, and it is unknown what may happen if an IP owner does not file a case. Customs may be put in a difficult position if there are dangerous counterfeits in the shipment. Conversely, IP owners will have paid a customs bond and which would be at risk if they take no action. Unfortunately the rules are unclear as to how to solve this issue . As two seizures have occurred, the best solution will likely be to settle the case as fast as possible.