Swimwear Cataloger Alleges Trademark Infringement

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Cataloger Venus Swimwear has sued Pacific Sunwear in the U.S. District Court in Jacksonville, FL, charging that the clothing company has infringed on its Venus trademark.


Venus Swimwear filed the suit June 13 seeking to have Pacific Sunwear, Anaheim, CA, discontinue the way it displays its Venus Girl Trap logo. Venus Swimwear also is seeking unspecified monetary damages.


The problem is that Pacific Sunwear displays "Venus" more prominently than "Girl Trap," said Daryle Scott, president/CEO of Venus Swimwear, Jacksonville. He wants Pacific Sunwear to end the practice.


"They were labeling the goods with their trademark in such a manner [that] in our opinion, and those of some of our customers who felt misled, it looks confusingly similar to our [trademark]," Scott said.


The cataloger became aware of the problem in March and contacted Pacific Sunwear to remove the labeling. Scott said his company gave a deadline of May 31 for Pacific to have the merchandise off its shelves. But as of last week, the items were still being displayed with the misleading logo, he said.


"We have one retail store, but we sell our suits on a wholesale basis to high-end surf shops. We wouldn't sell to a major chain like [Pacific Sunwear], and that's where the confusion on our customers' part comes in," Scott said. "Our items are on store shelves out there, just not in Pacific Sunwear."


Officials from Pacific Sunwear were unavailable for comment.


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