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Submitted January 8, 2001

An Atlantic County grand jury indicted defendants Phillip Marchiani and Lillian Buonfiglio Marchiani for selling items bearing counterfeit trademarks, contrary to the Trademark Counterfeiting Act, N.J.S.A. 2C:21-32, (“TCA”). The Atlantic County Assignment Judge concluded that the TCA only protected defendants’ customers from deceit or fraud and did not protect the trademark owners or any other persons. Because defendants’ customers knew they were not buying name-brand goods, the judge found the TCA was not violated, and dismissed the indictment, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:2-11, the de minimis statute. The State appeals from the dismissal. We conclude that the TCA protects not only defendants’ customers but also other persons, including the trademark owners and future consumers of the counterfeit goods.

 
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