Should people who buy counterfeit handbags be arrested?

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That's the latest handbag question being posed by New York's City Council. Thoughts?

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New York City Council are again bouncing around the question as to whether people who support the counterfeit handbag industry by buying from dealers, should in fact face a jail sentence too.

While the production of fake designer handbags is already a crime worthy of sentencing, buying them isn't.

That could all be about to change however, if Councilwoman Margaret Chin gets her way.

As reported by NYC blog gothamist.com, Margaret argues that counterfeit handbags currently cost the city at least $1 billion in tax revenue, hurts designers and legitimate vendors, helps contribute to child labour and "is really having a severe impact on quality of life."

Battling street-side vendors and an area alongside Canal that has become so notorious for knock-off selling it's now known as the 'Counterfeit Triangle', Margaret means business.

Proposing that the purchase of a fake handbag becomes a misdemeanor crime, Maragret's legislation bill recommends that the offence be punishable by up to one year in jail, or a $1,000 fine. Wowzers.

There are questions however, over how it coud be proved that the buyer knew for certain the bag was counterfeit. Does everyone know what a real Hermés Birkin looks like? Could your nana spot a fake Louis Vuitton?

What do you think of Margaret Chin's suggestions? Should those who support the counterfeit market be just as punishable as those who make money from it?

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