The barrage of counterfeit jewelry products bearing the “Isis Cross” will cease! After more than two years of battling with counterfeiters, Tory Burch, LLC and its subsidiary (“Tory Burch”) secured a $41 million judgment and permanent injunction against jewelry company Lin & J International, Inc. and its owners (“Lin & J”). The judge found that Lin & J’s counterfeiting and trademark infringement were willful. Thus, the judgment includes an award of attorney’s fees.
The counterfeiters’ website has been taken down and redirected to Tory Burch’s official website. The website also educates by providing information about counterfeiting:
Tory Burch’s iconic “TT” symbol is set forth below.
Yes, I confess I bought a pair of patent leather ballet flats.
I know they are real (not just because of the hefty price tag), because I bought them from an official Tory Burch store in the Meatpacking District in New York City.
Lin & J sold jewelry with an “Isis Cross” design (see below) prior to the judgment.
In the lawsuit, Lin & J tried to paint Tory Burch as the infringer of its Isis Cross design and trademark by bringing a counterclaim alleging unfair trade practices, defamation, trademark infringement and others. Lin & J even sought injunctive relief against Tory Burch.
Tory Burch has a history of vigorously defending her trademark and brand. For example, she has brought lawsuits against other alleged counterfeiters, including Wona Trading Inc., Jewelry House Corp. and Glizlane Boutique.
You might recall the newly minted billionaire Ms. Burch was embroiled in a different type of lawsuit against her ex-husband and former business partner Chris Burch, which DuetsBlog has previously posted about.
The lawsuit involved allegations by Mr. Burch that Tory was tortiously interfering with his business C. Wonder (not sure I like the name) and breaching a contract with him. In response, Tory alleged that her ex-husband had, among other things, violated his fiduciary duty to the Tory Burch company. Although he was forced off the board, Chris Burch still owned a 28.3% stake interest in the company when they divorced. She even called C. Wonder a “knockoff brand.” The battling exes ultimately settled their dispute.
Chris had a nice C. Wonder store in the Time Warner Building at Columbus Circle in the Upper West Side of New York City. Unfortunately for Mr. Burch, C. Wonder closed all of its stores earlier this year.