David Yurman awarded $1.6M in counterfeit case
- David Yurman was awarded $1.55 million in damages by the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against 31 defendants who operated unlicensed websites that sold counterfeit products, according to a company press release.
- The defendants were accused of operating a network of websites that falsely used the company's trademarks in order to sell counterfeit David Yurman jewelry. The court issued a permanent injunction against the defendants barring them from manufacturing, distributing, advertising and selling any counterfeit David Yurman products.
- "We will not tolerate infringers and counterfeiters in the marketplace regardless of where they operate," Carol Pennelli, president of David Yurman, said in a statement.
David Yurman was awarded over $1.5 million, but the case was against unknown parties. In court documents obtained by Retail Dive, defendants were referred to as "John Does 1-31" and are described as an individual or a group of people whose identities and true locations are unknown.
The names of the offenders are a mystery because, as the David Yurman website explains, so much commerce has moved online. "Frequently, these sites, known as 'rogue websites,' mirror the look and feel of the official David Yurman website, or otherwise create the impression that they are associated with David Yurman, when in fact they are often not authentic product."
While the counterfeiters operate in the shadows mimicking designer brands, consumers may unknowingly turn over credit card information to make purchases that never result in receiving a final product.
The issue of counterfeits is an area of concern for different branches of the United States government. In 2017, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement seized a record number of shipments of illegal goods, with a combined retail price tag of $1.2 billion.
At a December 2018 congressional briefing on counterfeits, Bradley Hayes, the executive director in the office of trade relations at U.S. Customs and Border Protection, revealed that the organization seizes around $3.4 million worth of intellectual property rights violations per day.
"These numbers are kind of mind-boggling and mind-blowing," he said.
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