AT LEAST five people are being arrested every week for selling bootleg DVDs in Southall and the problem is 'endemic', according to the local chief of police.
Inspector Rob Bryan said proceeds from the sale of DVDs are funding organised crime and the issue has become a 'real problem' for the area.
"Southall Safer Neighbourhood Team arrests about five sellers a week and regularly bust the main distributors. Their last bust netted thousands of counterfeit DVDs," he said.
"The sale of counterfeit DVDs in Southall is a real problem, particularly the sale of Bollywood movies.
"The police work with the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) to arrest sellers and distributors but the public must do their bit too and stop buying dodgy films.
"You might think you are getting a good deal but you are actually putting money into the pockets of drug dealers, pornographic film-makers and extremists."
Manjit Singh, ward councillor for Southall Broadway said: "The Broadway is the worst spot for it. There are many people selling fake DVDs on the shopping thoroughfare.
"They put the real films in front and then the fake ones behind them, offering five films for £10. I would like to see trading standards officers and the police crack down on the sales of these films."
A spokesman for FACT said: "We are pleased to be working alongside Southall police to tackle this problem and we would urge anyone with any information on the manufacture, distribution or sale of these films to contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111."
On February 4, Southall Broadway Safer Neighbourhood Team uncovered what is believed to be the biggest haul of illegal counterfeit DVDs, DVD burners and photocopying equipment in London.
Officers were on patrol when they received information about suspicious activity in a commercial building in Tachbrook Road, Southall.
They gained entry and a search revealed a huge operation, with 420 DVD burners with the capacity of producing 50,000 DVDs a day.
More than 300,000 counterfeit DVDs of current cinema releases and hard-core pornography were discovered. Four men were arrested and are currently on bail while police continue their investigation.
You can contact FACT on 020 8568 6646 or visit www.fact-uk.org.uk for more details.