With tickets for the Super Bowl going for more than a thousand dollars, it's no surprise counterfeiters might try to make a buck. One counterfeit operation producing fake tickets to the big game has already been sacked, according to authorities. NY1’s Dean Meminger filed the following report.
The Super Bowl ticket shown above costs $1,500, but according to law enforcement, it's a fake.
"Best quality counterfeits that I've ever seen certainly an indication that counterfeiters are upping their game, especially around the big game,” said Homeland Security Special Agent in Charge James Hayes.
The Department of Homeland Security and the NYPD say they busted Damon Daniels of the Bronx and Eugene Fladger of Philadelphia in front of a White Castle on Webster Avenue in the Bronx.
Authorities say they were watching the pair for at least a month. Officers say the men had $100,000 worth of fake tickets to the Super Bowl and other events.
The counterfeits were allegedly made at an apartment on 166th Place in Queens. Some tickets had realistic barcodes.
“We have some work to do in terms of looking at the technology because some of them we have reason to believe would have actually fooled the scanners,” said Hayes.
Tickets aren't the only counterfeit problem for the Super Bowl.
Homeland security agents working with NFL experts hit city streets to confiscate fake football shirts and other clothing and make arrests. Fans and vendors in Times Square say they understand the concern, but are mixed on whether street vendors should be arrested.
"You have to start from the top, because when you start from the bottom, you know, all we are really trying to do out here is make a dollar so we can support our family,” said one vendor.
"I was here two weeks ago and I knew they sold a lot of hats, I've been looking for the counterfeit ones, not to buy them,” said a Times Square visitor.
Law enforcement officials say if you are buying any tickets or merchandise associated with the Super Bowl , make sure to purchase them for legitimate websites and vendors.
"Last year during the run up to the Super Bowl in Dallas our agency seized more than $14 million worth of counterfeit merchandise,” said Hayes.
And this year it's expected to be a lot more because the big game is in the biggest market in the country.