A federal court in Houston, TX has awarded Farouk Systems, Inc. the manufacturer of CHI® Ceramic Hairstyling irons and other personal products, a $300 million default judgment against a group of Internet counterfeiters in a trademark infringement case, in what is believed to be one of the largest judgments ever issued for trademark infringement; certainly largest for online infringers and counterfeiters.
Additionally, the court transferred to Farouk Systems dozens of Internet domain names used by the defendants to operate their counterfeiting businesses. The defendants, based in China and Hong Kong and operating under a series of fake names and addresses, set up more than 100 different websites and online businesses to sell counterfeit CHI® hair products to U.S. customers. The counterfeiters used domain names such as chihaironline.com and chiretailsite.com, to trick consumers into believing they were buying genuine CHI® hair products from authorized websites.
Counterfeit CHI® hair tools can have serious health and safety issues for consumers. “While the sale of counterfeit products is irresponsible for any company, it is worse to counterfeit heating appliances, like hairstyling irons, since these fakes have not passed regulatory safety standards,” says Farouk Systems founder and chairman Farouk Shami. “People think that by buying over the Internet, they are getting a deal, but in reality, they could be buying fake, inferior products that could be a fire hazard.”
Farouk Systems was also able to obtain a court injunction to freeze the counterfeiters’ assets and shut down their websites. “This case and judgment have been very disruptive to the counterfeiting community,” says Farouk Systems General Counsel Wisam Ghuneim. “We trust that these businesses and individuals will think twice before knocking off our products again.”
For more information, visit farouk.com.