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21 January 2011

Murder of customs official warrants investigation, says shocked IP community

As mourners today attend the funeral of the murdered South African customs official Johan Nortje, the IP community is calling for an investigation into the alleged connections between his apparent assassination and the counterfeit gangs he cracked.

15 December 2010

Supreme Court of Appeal clarifies procedure under Counterfeit Goods Act

In Minister of Trade and Industry v E L Enterprises, the Supreme Court of Appeal has clarified the meaning of Section 5(4) of the Counterfeit Goods Act, which sets out the procedure to be followed in the event of a search and seizure without a warrant. Until now, uncertainty over the procedure had caused advisors to recommend a conservative approach, which often meant additional costs and delay.

29 November 2010

Supreme Court of Appeal issues decision on cloning and counterfeiting

In Puma AG Rudolf Dassler Sport v Rampar Trading (Pty) Ltd, the Supreme Court of Appeal has upheld Puma AG Rudolf Dassler Sport's appeal in a case involving counterfeit shoes. This case provides a useful interpretation of the Counterfeit Goods Act and is likely to be welcomed by brand owners, because it clarifies that no cloning is required to get the benefit of protection under the act.

07 October 2010

SCA considers inquiry into damages sought in motion proceedings

In Cadac (Pty) Ltd v Weber-Stephen Products Company, the Supreme Court of Appeal has upheld Cadac (Pty) Ltd's appeal against the High Court's refusal of its application for an inquiry into damages. Among other things, the court held that Cadac’s delay in prosecuting its claim had not led to its extinction by prescription.

08 July 2010

Counterfeiter sentenced to one year's imprisonment

In State of Israel v Hammuda, the defendant has been sentenced to one year's imprisonment for trademark counterfeiting under the Israeli Trademarks Ordinance and forgery under the Penal Law. This sentence departs from the usual practice in trademark counterfeiting cases, thereby reflecting the gravity of the defendant's conduct.

02 February 2010

Losing definition: the global debate over 'counterfeit' drugs

As Kenya moves to implement its controversial Anti-counterfeit Act, which effectively outlaws generic drugs, WTR examines the problem with the term 'counterfeit medicine' and why it troubles brand owners around the world.

15 October 2009

Counterfeiter convicted in Absolut Vodka Case

In The State of Israel v Yitach, the Jerusalem Magistrates Court has charged an individual suspected of counterfeiting several liquor brands with falsely marking Absolut Vodka bottles under Section 60 of the Trademarks Ordinance. However, the court dismissed the charges in respect of the other brands due to insufficient evidence.

19 June 2009

Customs given new powers to fight counterfeiting

The Nigerian Customs Service, the government agency responsible for regulating the importation and exportation of goods into and from Nigeria, may now prevent the importation of counterfeit goods. According to Part 1, Schedule 4 of the new Common External Tariff, the importation of “all counterfeit/pirated materials or articles" is prohibited.

03 June 2009

Landmark decision on criminal charges issued

In an important decision for trademark infringement actions, the Court of First Instance has imposed criminal charges on the consignee of a container filled with cases of counterfeit cigarettes. The Court of Appeal upheld the decision in just over a month, which shows that trademark rights can be properly enforced in all of the UAE territories within a short timeframe.

24 April 2009

Dubai seizures indicate jump in low-cost counterfeits

The number of seizures made by Dubai Customs has risen by 39% in the first quarter of 2009, although the total value of seized goods has dropped dramatically by over 80%.

11 February 2009

No damages awarded for shipment of fake watches made in error

In Rolex SA v Balloons and Entertainment Ltd, the Tel Aviv District Court has dismissed Rolex SA’s claim for damages against an Israeli importer of counterfeit Rolex watches. The court held that the importer had discharged its burden of proving that the shipment had been made in error by providing an affidavit by the manager of its Chinese supplier.

28 January 2009

Saudi customs authorities work with private sector to fight counterfeiting

The Saudi Arabia Customs Authority has signed a memorandum of understanding with a fraud and counterfeiting-detection company.

24 October 2008

Lizard device held to infringe Lacoste’s crocodile mark

In Lacoste SA (formerly La Chemise Lacoste) v Long Chang Trading CC, the High Court has enjoined Long Chang Trading CC from infringing Lacoste SA's registered crocodile device mark. Among other things, the court found that Long Chang's lizard device presented more than one of the essential particulars of Lacoste's mark.

17 June 2008

Bic awarded damages based on inconvenience

In Société Bic Anonyme de Droit Français v Wenbara Trading Company Ltd, the High Court of Uganda has awarded Société Bic Anonyme de Droit Français NUSh10 million in damages for inconvenience caused by the legal suit. This counterfeiting case was relatively straightforward, but it is arguably the first time that a Ugandan court has awarded damages based on inconvenience.

11 June 2008

Black & Decker triumphs in Dubai's highest court

Black & Decker Corporation has triumphed in a counterfeiting case before the Dubai Court of Cassation. Dubai's highest court affirmed decisions by the Dubai Court of First Instance and the Dubai Court of Appeals in which the latter had sentenced three individuals to payment of a fine of Dhr5,000 each and confiscation of the seized goods.