January 06, 2020

Volvo Cars win trademark infringement case against Chinese counterfeiters selling inferior and fake car parts

[ by Kavita Krishnan ]


Volvo Cars won a trademark infringement case in a federal court in Virginia against dozens of Chinese counterfeiters that have sold billions of dollars worth of fake and inferior car parts over the internet.

Volvo opened its only U.S. manufacturing plant off Interstate 26 near Ridgeville in 2018 and obtained a default judgment against the counterfeiters in a federal court in Virginia.

The court documents showed that the counterfeiters created numerous accounts on shopping websites such as eBay and Amazon to sell parts with Volvo logos, making it appear as if the parts were original equipments from the automaker.

The sellers accepted payments only through the Paypal money transfer website and shipped the parts by mail.

Volvo claimed that the sellers’ websites attract tens of millions of visitors a year who spend billions annually on fake parts for Volvos and other car brands, most of them made in China.

The automaker in its complaint asserted that these sites are also estimated to contribute to tens of thousands of lost jobs for legitimate businesses and broader economic damages, such as lost tax revenue, every year. The addresses of the sellers couldn’t be determined as they used the internet to conceal their identities, Volvo said.

Volvo served the counterfeiters with court papers through the email addresses they had registered with Paypal.

Volvo obtained $2 million default judgments against 148 sellers. Judge Liam O’Grady ordered Paypal to transfer any money present in the sellers’ accounts to Volvo and gave the automaker the right to seize funds from any new accounts opened by the sellers.

Volvo Cars filed the lawsuits along with Volvo Trademark Holding, which it co-owns with truck and bus maker Volvo AB. The trademark subsidiary is responsible for owning, safeguarding and protecting Volvo’s brands and licensing the right to use those brands to companies.

Volvo is headquartered in Gothenburg, Sweden and is owned by China’s Geely Holding Group.

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