Your chances of finding faux designer handbags and accessories amid the wares of street-corner kiosks in Toronto and Vancouver may be severely limited now that Canada’s federal court awarded its largest-ever judgment in a trademark counterfeiting and copyright case to a handful of designers.
Louis Vuitton, Burberry Limited and Burberry Canada Inc. won a CAD $2.5 million judgment recently against Singga Enterprises (Canada) Inc. and Carnation Fashion Co. and their respective owners and operators, importers, distributors and online sellers. The companies were found to have sold counterfeit Louis Vuitton and Burberry handbags and accessories since January 2008.
The court found that the counterfeiters were involved in vast, sophisticated manufacturing operations in China, and importing them to Canada with intent to sell nationwide in stores, online and at gift shows.
“This is a landmark award and decisive victory for Louis Vuitton,” Valerie Sonnier, global intellectual property director for Louis Vuitton said in a release. “We are pleased that the Federal Court in Canada recognizes the importance of protecting intellectual property, and awarding high compensatory damages as well as full punitive and exemplary damages as a strong punishment and an equally strong deterrent against counterfeiting and infringing activity.”