Counterfeit goods: Gucci wins 9 million dollars compensation in the USA. But it’s unlikely to see any of it: the websites (Chinese) are shell companies

Gucci America has won compensation of nine million dollars. The ruling by the District Court of the Southern District of Florida concerns the sale of counterfeit products by about a hundred websites, mainly Chinese. 89 domain names have been ordered to cease operations within 30 days (and ownership of the sites will pass to Gucci), while the operators of each site have been ordered to pay 100,000 dollars, 110,000 if the Gucci brand name was used in the URL. The compensation is a mere formality since the websites are registered under fictitious names or companies (the usual practice in cases of counterfeit merchandise), and no physical person appeared in court so there is no counterparty that can be considered responsible. The seizing of funds, often through PayPal, is also minimal, since the accounts are regularly emptied.

 

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