Orioles brand still wanted -- by suspected counterfeiters
The Orioles may be sinking fast, but their brand is still a valuable commodity, right along with North Face, Puma and Red Bull. Or maybe it was just a local federal agent having fun with his home team.
Court documents show that an undercover Homeland Security agent investigating fraudulent name-brand merchandise being sold on the Internet made some purchases to help prove his case. He bought a North Face fleece and designer Dolce & Gabbana glasses. Then he purchased a pair of UGG boots.
The items were counterfeit, he alleges in a search warrant application filed in Baltimore's federal court, seeking to "seize" the Internet domain names of the companies he was buying from. You'd expect knock-offs of those items.
But when the agent needed more stuff for his investigation, he bought a "large Red Bull hat," and two baseball caps -- The Washington Senators and the Baltimore Orioles. The Orioles cap cost $34.80, from a company in China.
The baseball caps, the agent wrote, "were of poor quality, material, and craftsmanship. The identification labels and packaging material were also of poor quality and uncharacteristic of genuine products."
I'm not sure what other baseball caps were available, or if the agent, Michael T. McFarland II, was having a bit of fun with his home teams (he's assigned to the cyber crimes division in Baltimore). Either way, it was nice to see the Orioles in such prestigious company.