Counterfeiters who produce fake copies of central London's world famous street signs could now be prosecuted, it has been revealed.
The signs were created by renowned British designer Sir Misha Black
Westminster Council has bought the copyright to the iconic red and black signs created by the late design guru Sir Misha Black in the 1960s.
As well as prosecution, anyone found in breach of copyright may also be fined.
The council has said any copyright fees gained will be ploughed back into front line services.
Councillor Danny Chalkley, from Wesminster Council, said: "We bought the copyright as we felt we needed to retain an element of control over the signs to maintain Westminster's image as a world class tourist destination.
"As we now have the copyright the council has exclusive rights to reproduce the signs and grant licences to people wishing to reproduce them."
Trading standards officers will monitor any breaches of copyright and report any infringes to the council's legal department.
The signs will be used in official council publications to help advertise Westminster's visitor attractions.