SEATTLE -- Laundry soap did seem an unusual product for someone to counterfeit.
Rolex watches, Gucci handbags, Tiffany jewelry or Windows operating systems are the kinds of goods that you imagine in the counterfeit world.
But fake Tide detergent?
In September, 5,000 boxes of the phony stuff were seized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents in Seattle after being unloaded from a container ship that had arrived from China.
That shipment, the agency estimates, would have generated a profit of at least $4,000 on the Tide-labeled detergent and an additional 3,600 bags of Ariel-labeled detergent also found in the container. A favorite abroad, Ariel is sold here in such places as Mexican groceries.
If there is a profit to be made, however small, somebody will try to sneak it in. And it all adds up.