Coach Wins $44 Million Judgment Against Mother-and-Daughter Counterfeiters
Ain't nothing like the real thing, baby.
Just ask Coach Inc., who has been awarded a $44 million judgment in its lawsuit against a U.S.-based mother and daughter who have been selling counterfeit Coach handbags online, Women's Wear Daily reports.
Judge Colleen McMahon of Manhattan federal court ruled that Linda and Courtney Allen of Syosset, NY had "willfully" violated the label's trademark for a total of 22 infringements, citing the defendants' websites, BellaFashions.net and MyClassyFashion.com, which state that the items are "not original" and are "in no way affiliated with the authentic manufacturers.”
Ruling on July 19, Judge McMahon granted Coach a permanent injunction to shut down the sites and issued the staggering $44 million verdict, slamming Linda Allen for repeated acts of counterfeiting. The woman was also sued by Chanel in 2007 for trademark counterfeiting and infringement.
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"Linda Allen plainly requires substantial deterrence because she has not been deterred by prior judgments,” Judge McMahon told the court. “She persists in her contumacious behavior. This award may be crippling, but it is plainly needed to prevent Allen from going back once again into the business of counterfeiting.”
When questioned by WWD, Allen claimed that the charges against her were "not valid."
Coach, meanwhile, couldn't be happier with the outcome.
"Coach is exceedingly pleased with the court’s ruling,” says Nancy Axilrod, Coach’s deputy general counsel. “The decision in Coach v. Linda Allen, et al. should serve as a warning to defendants in all pending Coach lawsuits that courts consider counterfeiting a serious issue and are prepared to order defendants to pay large sums of money. This decision should also serve as notice to all who traffic in counterfeit goods that Coach will vigorously pursue you, and will win.”
Be warned, counterfeiters!