Converse court case highlights imitation sale issue
The US shoe company Converse has accused a string of Danish supermarkets of selling illegal fake Converse products to their customers, according to Metroxpress newspaper.
Converse is currently suing Kvickly, Fakta, Lidl and Harald Nyborg, all of which are accused of selling fake Converse All Star shoes and boots back in 2012. The court case is expected to start next month with millions of kroner on the line.
“I haven’t seen any proof that the Converse shoes were fakes,” Per Sjøqvist, the lawyer representing Fakta and Kvickly, told Metroxpress. Lidl and Harald Nyborg did not wish to comment.
As opposed to Fakta and Kvickly, Lidl and Harald Nyborg did not inform their customers that Converse had notified them that the shoes were fake.
The dark side
And the Converse case is far from the only one, according to Hanne Weywardt, a lawyer and partner in MAQS Law Firm. The sale of imitation goods is on the rise in Denmark.
“Our law firm encounters a handful of new cases each month involving supermarkets selling imitated trademark goods,” Weywardt said.
According to Henrik G Jacobsen, a lawyer from The IPR Company, the financial crisis has pushed Danish shops to take more risks to reap the lucrative rewards from selling imitation goods.
But there is a dark side to imitation goods. Pirate copies are often imported by criminal organisations that don’t pay taxes, and western companies are hit hard when people buy cheap Chinese copies. Products can also be unregulated and contain toxic compounds that are a danger to the consumer, Jacobsen said.