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Tiffany Sues Texas Counterfeiter For Trademark Infringement

October 24, 2012,

diamond_ring.jpgCalifornia -- Tiffany LLC filed a complaint in Texas federal court on Monday against an online retailer it accuses of ripping off its trademarks in selling counterfeit bracelets, necklaces and other jewelry.

Olga Sanchez, who operates Bag Fashion Under God, Elegant Bags, BagFashionMore.com and BagFashionSpa.com, is directly and personally engaging in the sale of counterfeit products, Tiffany says.

Tiffany is in the business of manufacturing and selling high-quality jewelry including bracelets, necklaces, earrings and other goods under its federally registered trademarks for the Tiffany name. The company spends millions of dollars annually in connection with its trademark enforcement efforts, including legal fees, investigative fees and support mechanisms for law enforcement, it says.

Sanchez is advertising, distributing and selling counterfeit products including the aforementioned pieces of jewelry bearing trademarks that are exact copies or colorable imitations of those belonging to Tiffany, according to the complaint.

Her products are far inferior to Tiffany's genuine goods, but she is actively selling substantial quantities of merchandise with the knowledge that they will be mistaken for the real deal, Tiffany says.

"In so advertising these products, defendants improperly and unlawfully use plaintiff's Tiffany marks, and they have correspondingly misappropriated plaintiff's advertising ideas and business styles used in connection with the advertisement and sale of plaintiff's genuine products," the complaint says.

Sanchez's infringement and disparagement of Tiffany's trademark rights does not merely amount to an incorrect description of the goods or a failure of the goods to conform to advertised quality or performance, Tiffany says.

"Instead, by engaging in their wrongful activities, defendants are, upon information and belief, actively defrauding both plaintiff and the consuming public for defendants' own benefit," the complaint says.

Sanchez is knowingly and intentionally infringing the trademarks, or at least acting with reckless disregard or willful blindness to Tiffany's rights, for the purpose of trading on Tiffany's established reputation and goodwill, the company says.

Tiffany is seeking damages of $2 million for each counterfeit Tiffany mark per type of good sold or distributed, as well as treble damages, interest, costs and attorneys' fees.