Bag Lady South Florida style
From the Sun-Sentinel-
Expensive cars kept pulling up to the tastefully decorated home west of West Palm Beach to buy handbags and accessories. Business was booming, to the point that the Bentleys and Jaguars created traffic on the quiet residential street.What well-heeled people would want bogus designer goods? Unless their trappings of wealth were as phony as the goods they were purchasing.
But the well-heeled customers left with counterfeit handbags and jewelry bearing expensive designer names: Gucci, Prada, Cartier, Fendi, Louis Vuitton.
It had been that way for five years, and Hetty Palant, 62, told the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office she made about a half-million dollars.
Her orchid-framed home in the 8300 block of Pioneer Road -- worth about $600,000, according to county records -- was where Palant was arrested Wednesday on counterfeit charges. She appeared in court Thursday and was released on her own recognizance.
Palant kept regular business hours at the two-story home, and clients came to view counterfeit goods in the garage and laundry room that she converted into an illegal shop, investigators said.
Her prices were good.
A Louis Vuitton clutch bag was tagged for $90. If authentic, it would cost $475, investigators said. A Chanel change bag was $45. The real thing goes for $225.
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