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Posted October 2, 2012 | comments 13 Comments

Mall stores face lawsuit

Luxury purse maker says local retailer sold fakes

By Joe Beck -- jbeck@nvdaily.com

A maker of luxury gifts and accessories lowered the boom Monday on a Winchester retailer in U.S. District Court in Harrisonburg.

New York City-based Coach, Inc. and Coach Services, Inc. filed a lawsuit accusing Huong Ngoc Nguyen of selling fake Coach purses, wallets, jewelry, watches, accessories and footwear out of two stores she operates in Apple Blossom Mall.

"Defendant has no license, authority, or other permission from Coach to use any of the Coach trademarks in connection with the designing, manufacturing, advertising, promoting, distributing, selling and offering for sale of the infringing products," the suit states.

Coach investigators, accompanied by uniformed Virginia State Police armed with search warrants, raided Europe Nails and Perfect Nails on July 19, according to the lawsuit complaint. The investigators and state police seized 32 handbags and 15 wallets bearing the Coach trademark, "among other counterfeit products from various brands," according to the suit.

An additional eight handbags and wallets with Coach trademarks were seized from Perfect Nails, the complaint states.

The plaintiff accuses Nguyen of actions that "are likely to continue to cause confusion or mistake, or to deceive consumers, the public and the trade into believing the defendants' . . . products are genuine or authorized products of Coach."

The suit asks Nguyen, of Bunker Hill, W. Va., to pay Coach $2 million in statutory damages per counterfeit mark on items seized or a court order requiring Nguyen to "pay to Coach all profits realized by their wrongful acts and also awarding Coach its actual damages, and also directing that such profits and damages" be tripled.

The suit describes Coach products as "widely recognized and exclusively associated by consumers, the public and the trade as high quality products." Coach products are "among the most popular in the world" with annual sales of more than $3 billion, the suit states.

13 Comments | Leave a comment

    If this is what we h ave our State Police doing with our tax money, then maybe we need a whole lot less State Police on the pay roll.

    This is a civil matter between a company and a business. We do not need to waste our tax payer money enforcing trademark and such with our police.

    SICK. A mother can't feed her children in Front Royal/Warren County, because the police won't go after child support dead beats - and in fact won't even consider a report until after the deadbeat passes $5000....take a look at the long long list....

    ....yet billion dollars companies like Coach can use our resources to track down people selling their fakes...WOW...

      Really? Last time I looked the police needed orders from the court to execute search warrants and go after those determined to be deadbeat parents. The officers are doing the job they are paid to do and must follow the orders of a judge. It is not like they can pick and choose which search warrants they want to execute.

      Steve, I believe every man should pay his child support if the court ruled him to do so. But what the majority of these mothers do not realize is just because reality TV says it's cool to be young and unwed that you should not create a baby if you are not grown up enough to realize you might be faced with supporting it on your own.

      If said "deadbeat" died tomorrow and the mother was still wed to him she could applied for spousal and child support against his Social Security. If she is divorced she could apply for child support only. If she never married him she is not eligible for anything. So one dead "deadbeat" usually means the mother is left to raise the child on her own. DO NOT create a baby if you are not prepared for the fact that one day you might have to raise it alone.

      And for you and old clunker you both need to realize the way copyright infringement works. I go to the mall, I see what I think could be fake goods, I call the cops, the cops call Coach. Coach then SPENDS ALL THE FUNDS to send an undercover company rep to verify if they are. They then file a court motion to search. Then the cops go and search and seize the goods.

      I get a nice fat large reward for turning them in and the cops get 50% of the value of the seized goods. Out of pocket for the state is a BIG FAT 0, they actually make money on the deal. Just like the person that turned them in. Maybe you should learn more about fake goods so you can turn your reward money over to help women with "deadbeat dads",

    Maybe you do not realize how profitable this is to the state police. If I was the one that turned in the businesses to Coach, or whatever company I would receive a large reward, but the police department that brings it to the company's attention usually receives 50% of the estimated value of the goods seized.

    If I worked my rear off and created a copyrighted product I would prosecute whomever violated it as well.

    good comment on here user123. I think these girls/young ladies are watching to much reality tv. It takes alot to raise a kid. Keep them legs crossed if your not ready.

    On behalf of all perfect European people, I would like to file a class action lawsuit against Ms. Nguyen. I have reason to believe that her nail trimming services are neither perfect nor European.

    Well in this case the the goods seized have no value. Maybe the store fixtures but not the merchandise.

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