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JT&N Successfully Handled the Administrative Litigation Supervision of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate and Completely Put An End to the Dispute of An International Fashion Brand in China

2021-03-18/ RECENT DEALS/

Recently, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate issued a Letter on the Decision Not to Support the Application for Supervision with respect to the judgment made by the Supreme People’s Court in the retrial of the administrative case regarding the trademark “WechatIMG13079.png”. Through the systematic research and active defense by the attorney team from JT&N, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate eventually determined upon review that: the trademark in dispute had been commercially used in a public and real manner during the prescribed period, the evidence was sufficient, the facts ascertained in the retiral judgment were clear, the application of law was corrent and the procedures were legal; therefore, the grounds on which the application made by Jiaqi JIN for supervision was untenable. So far, the dispute over the brand “BOY LONDON” in China has lasted for more than ten years has finally come to an end after going through the proceedings at the China National Intellectual Property Administration , the first instance, the second instance, and the retrial, as well as the supervision proceeding.

After being entrusted by the Anglofranchise Limited in the second instance, the team of attorneys Yong WANG and Zhenzhong YANG from JT&N successfully reversed the unfavorable results with unremitting efforts, who focused on every little thing and eventually cleared the trademark barriers of Anglofranchise Limited in mainland China; in this way, the exclusive market position of the brand “BOY LONDON” in China was won over for the client. Since then, the so-called Korean version of “BOY LONDON” has completely withdrawn from the Chinese market, and the English version of “BOY LONDON” has occupied all the market shares.

 

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Brief Introduction of the Case

Originating in the 1970s, the brand “BOY LONDON” was founded by Anglofranchise Limited in London, England, and is the originator of British street fashion brands. After decades of painstaking management by Anglofranchise Limited, the brand has been extremely influential in the world.

Anglofranchise Limited applied for the “Eagle” graphic trademark (No. 973732) in mainland China in 1995, which was approved for use on the clothing, shoes, hats and other commodities in Category 25.

In 2001, Jiaqi JIN, a natural person from South Korean, maliciously filed a registration application for the trademark “2.png” (No. 3050013), which was also used on the commodities such as shoes and hats in Category 25.

 

 

A comparison between the “BOY LONDON” trademarks of Anglofranchise Limited and Jiaqi JIN

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The trademark “BOY及图” (No. 3050013) is highly similar to the “Eagle” graphic trademark (No. 973732), both of which are designated to be used on commodities such as clothing, shoes and hats in Class 25; therefore, they are obviously similar trademarks on the same commodities. The registration application for the trademark “BOY及图” (No. 3050013) of Jiaqi JIN, a South Korean, after the trademark registration of Anglofranchise Limited obviously violates the provision of Article 28 of the Trademark Law (2001 version), and thus should not be approved. However, the legal fence did not enclose the obvious injustice. The trademark “BOY及图” (No. 3050013) that is highly similar to the previously registered trademark managed to go across all system barriers and was approved for registration on August 28, 2010. Since then, there has formed a situation where the English version of“BOY LONDON”and the Korean version of“BOY LONDON”coexist in the Chinese market, which has greatly harmed the legitimate rights and interests of Anglofranchise Limited.

In order to gain more benefits, despite of the fact that he himself is the guilty party, Jiaqi JIN first filed an application on January 22, 2013 for revoking the“Eagle”graphic trademark (No. 973732) of Anglofranchise Limited and prohibiting the same from use for three years.

In the trademark review procedure and the first-instance procedure, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (商评委) and the Beijing Intellectual Property Court both determined that Anglofranchise Limited did not actually use the trademark in dispute during the designated period and the disputed trademark should be revoked. At the critical juncture of the case, JT&N accepted the entrustment of Anglofranchise Limited, who, after meticulous sorting of the evidence and adequate preparation for responding, successfully reversed the unfavorable first-instance results in the second instance and maintained the victory up to and until the retrial.

In face of the retrial judgment made by the Supreme People's Court, Jiaqi JIN hadn’t given up. On March 10, 2020, he filed an application with the Supreme People’s Procuratorate for administrative litigation supervision, requesting the Supreme People's Procuratorate to conduct administrative litigation supervision on the retrial judgment made by the Supreme People's Court.

The attorney team of JT&N carefully sorted out the evidence for use and visibility of the trademark in dispute that has been submitted by both parties in the previous proceedings, and systematically demonstrated and analyzed relevant cases, and conducted an in-depth demonstration from the perspective of jurisprudence on the legislative purpose of "system for revoking and prohibiting from use for three consecutive years". By virtue of the appropriate defense strategy formulated by the team and the adequate preparation made by it for responding to the lawsuit, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate eventually determined that: the trademark in dispute was commercially used in a public and real manner during the designated period, the evidence was sufficient, the facts ascertained in the retiral judgment were clear, the application of law was correct and the procedures were legal; therefore, the grounds on which the application made by Jiaqi JIN for supervision was untenable.

In the series of cases concerning the trademark"BOY LONDON", the attorney team of JT&N reversed the unfavorable results, and successfully handled the administrative litigation supervision proceeding filed by the opposing party with the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, thereby putting a successful end to the trademark dispute that has lasted for more than ten years and involves the three jurisdictions of China, Britain and South Korea. This has not only effectively defended the well-known brand that was created and has been cultivated for many years by the foreign client, but also helped the client consolidate its market in China and greatly enhanced the confidence of the British business community in the judicial protection of intellectual property rights in China.

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