Zura Kazhiloti sold jewelry bearing the luxury brand names “Cartier” and “Van Cleef & Arpels” to jewelry stores. The retailers then sold the jewelry through their brick and mortar stores, through websites, and through the Internet auction site eBay. The jewelry was high quality counterfeits, however, that Kazhiloti sold at high prices and made hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenues. Each piece of fake Cartier jewelry bore the Cartier stylized “C” design trademark and other Cartier design trademarks. Each piece of fake Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry bore the Van Cleef & Arpels or “VCA” design trademark and other Van Cleef & Arpels design trademarks. The counterfeit jewelry used stones of inferior quality, and inferior cuts, chains, and clasps compared to the authentic pieces. The counterfeit jewelry contained serial numbers similar to those used by Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels. Kazhiloti supplied fake certificates of authenticity with each piece of jewelry. Eventually, Kazhiloti’s scheme was uncovered. In total, 24 pieces of counterfeit Cartier and 83 pieces of Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry were purchased or seized from the jewelry stores. Cartier International AG and Van Cleef & Arpels S. A. brought suit against Kazhiloti for trademark infringement. The plaintiffs sought a permanent injunction against Kazhiloti engaging in such activity and to recover monetary damages.
Kazhiloti asserted his Fifth Amendment constitutional right against self incrimination and refused to speak to authorities or produce any documents. Is Kazhiloti liable for trademark infringement? Cartier International A. G. and Van Cleef & Arpels S. A. v. Kazhiloti, 2013 U. S. Dist. Lexis 145278 ( United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, 2013)

  • CreatedAugust 12, 2015
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