HOUSTON - Fans looking for the all-star jersey of their favorite NBA player need to have their guard up.
Counterfeiters will be looking to get cash, leaving customers with a Lebron look-a-like.
Counterfeit merchandise is a multimillion dollar a year business.
Experts say there are three things every fan should know before turning over their hard-earned cash for merchandise.
- Look for the hologram sticker or hang tag and a sewn-in or screen printed label.
- Avoid street vendors and shop at NBA authorized retailers.
- Beware of ripped tags or irregular markings on apparel.
"I would say that if you follow those three guidelines in the first place, you will avoid being ripped off and scammed," said Amanda Thorn with the NBA.
In the past 20 years, authorities said they have seized $10 million worth of counterfeit items, valued at $389 million.
Counterfeiting costs the U.S. businesses up to $250 million a year.
With 50,000 feet of space and more than 2,000 items for sale, the NBA is banking on fans taking advantage of it's largest NBA All-Star store at Jam Session at the George R. Brown Convention Center.
Counterfeit operations that pop up in the Houston area this weekend will be hit from every angle.
The NBA plans to crack down on them with the help of local state and federal authorities
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