Cerruti 1881, S.A. v. Cerruti, Inc., 45 U.S.P.Q.2d (BNA) 1957 (S.D.N.Y. Jan. 5, 1998) (full-text).
Factual Background Edit
In an earlier opinion in this dispute between two clothing and fabric designers, the court granted a declaratory judgment in favor of plaintiffs, finding that defendant had acted in bad faith and had abandoned any rights to the CERRUTI trademark. Later, plaintiffs learned that defendant was operating an Internet website at the domain name "cerrutiusa.com," on which he marketed clothing, fabrics, and accessories under the name Q BY LEO CERRUTI.
Trial Court Proceedings Edit
The court granted plaintiff's motion for a preliminary injunction but refused to bar defendant from using his actual name to do business where defendant had shown he had done business under the name in the past. Finding that defendant's use of the CERRUTI name on his website rendered confusion likely, the court barred defendant from using the CERRUTI name, standing alone, to advertise any product, and ordered defendant to include a disclaimer on all labels, websites, and advertisements that "Leo Cerruti products are not related to or authorized by the worldwide Cerruti fashion firm based in Italy."
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