Could fake Louis Vuitton bags be a thing of the past? It's hard to imagine, especially when NYC's Canal Street is still overflowing with them, but a new ruling means the luxury goods company has won another battle.
The U.S. International Trade Commission ruled in favor of Louis Vuitton yesterday in an unfair trade case against a “large-scale international counterfeiting and infringing enterprise” profiting from faux iterations of LV's sacred toile monogram. Most importantly, the ruling offers the luxury brand added protection from counterfeiting by a pretty powerful force--the U.S. government.
Valerie Sonnier, global intellectual property director of Louis Vuitton Malletier, told WWD, "The chief administrative law judge recognizes the importance of protecting intellectual property and took the welcome step of ensuring that its orders include all merchandise that infringes on our Toile Monogram Marks, and not just products of the respondents in this case.”
The ruling comes after a 15-month investigation into a group of U.S. and Chinese companies that import and sell thousands of knockoffs through a large-scale counterfeiting operation headed up by a California-based husband and wife team (the goods are produced in China). The ITC ruled that the violations were indeed taking place but they've not yet issued a remedy. Louis Vuitton hopes for a cease and desist as well as an exclusion order preventing the infringing goods from making it into the U.S.
While this ruling won't put an immediate end to LV's counterfeiting woes, having the ITC on their side is clearly not a bad thing and will hopefully discourage counterfeiters from continuing to slap fake monograms onto handbags.