Update 1/28/22: The case has been transferred to the Fort Wayne division and assigned a new case number.
The Plaintiffs in this trademark lawsuit are a “seventy year old grandmother” and her corporation, Annie Oakley Enterprises, Inc, a Ligonier, Indiana-based company which manufactures and sells health and beauty products like perfumes, essential oils, and lotions (“Annie Oakley”).
Along with 50 John Does selling counterfeit products on the Amazon online marketplace, Annie Oakley is suing Amazon for trademark infringement, false designation, and unfair competition. Amazon is apparently the first and only U.S. company on the U.S. Trade Representative’s “Notorious Market List,” a list of the worst online markets based on counterfeit product sales, copyright piracy, and trademark infringement.
The Complaint (below) details a long history of Annie Oakley attempting to deal with counterfeit products sold on Amazon, with little or no recourse from Amazon. The inferior counterfeit products have resulted in numerous consumer complaints from customers not aware they were buying counterfeits.
This David v. Goliath story will be interesting to follow. Can a small-town Indiana grandmother force the world’s most valuable public company to seriously address recurring intellectual property violations? Or will Amazon simply see a lawsuit like this as a “cost of doing business” and continue to allow counterfeits in their marketplace? Stay tuned for updates.
Gabet et al. v. Amazon.com, Inc. et al.
Case Number: 1:22-cv-00035-HAB-SLC
File Date: January 20, 2022
Plaintiff: Renee Gabet, Annie Oakley Enterprises, Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: Paul B. Overhauser of Overhauser Law Offices, LLC
Defendant: Amazon.com, Inc., John Does 1-50
Cause: Federal Trademark Infringement, False Designation of Origin, Unfair Competition
Court: Northern District of Indiana
Judge: Holly A. Brady
Referred To: Susan L. Collins