My conjecture is that US Customs is likely to never function well as a consumer protection group although the .gov has suggested in writing that it would be a really nice thing to wish for.
Historically, US customs job was to collect tariffs. In the specific case of watches the legislation dates back to protectionist measures passed in 1930 - back when Illinois, Waltham and a host of other domestic producers were still viable. Marking "Swiss" on a watch was a warning
to consumers much like "Spain" or "Belgium" were marks that warned people away from cheap firearms. "Swiss" as a mark of quality didn't surface until much later.
Meantime customs, in addition to tariff enforcement, gets stuck with DHS stuff, amended Lacey act nonsense and a large ration of other stuff putting consumer protection (in a manner 180 degrees opposed to the original intent) pretty much toward the bottom of the heap. I wouldn't expect a change anytime soon. There's still people old enough at CBP to remember that "Swiss" was intended to mean "Not made in America" and thus would serve the exact same purpose as "Chinese", "Croatian" or whatever - you know it's not made in America - job done.
That leaves the FH's ownership of the marks at USPTO viable and enforceable - through civil action and only when FH is so inclined to pursue the matter and at no other time.
Class action? IANAL. But. There's a requirement for class certification that involves the concept of harm
. You have to have been harmed or no cert. And here it gets slippery - it'd be nice if Don B chimed in. You and a butt load of others bought a watch that was hand made in Switzerland by the top 10% of Swiss watchmakers. It was cased up, quality checked in Swiss ISO-9001 certified facilities by the same people that could have just as easily been employed by Rolex or Patek and - here comes the rub: you paid 200.00 for it rather than 2,000.00 or 20,000.00.
Have you been harmed? Probably not. You were lied to but a reasonable person might infer that he was, in fact, paying for a Chinese watch.
Could you mount a class action against Axe
because you paid 4.00 for body wash and didn't get laid like it promised on the bottle? A case could be made that a reasonable person should have known he wasn't getting 100% assurance of getting laid for 4.00 and he probably wasn't getting a Rolex for 200.00. In both cases you have not been harmed though you were, in varying degrees, misled.
I see the only viable option being simply consumer education - and that is a large part of what this place is about. Whatever is accomplished here is far more effective than harping on customs or waiting for FH to react every time we might wish them to.