Last month, an American blogger living in China discovered a string of fake Apple stores in her hometown. Now the counterfeiting trend has popped up stateside, and Apple has wasted no time in cracking down on it.
According to documents unsealed Thursday in Brooklyn federal court, Apple filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against two stores selling knockoffs of its products in Flushing, Queens. Both stores—Apple Story and Fun Zone — are owned by New York resident Janie Po Chiang, who is named as a co-defendant in the suit.
Apple accused the stores of selling unauthorized iPad, iPhone, and iPod accessories emblazoned with the company’s logo and other signature markings, including “Designed by Apple in California. Assembled in China.”
Apple said that it sent company representatives to Apple Story and Fun Zone on “multiple occasions over several weeks,” where they bought an assortment of knockoff accessories, including a pair of iPod earbuds that were “nearly an exact duplicate” of the real thing.
At Apple’s request, U.S. District Judge Kiyo Matsumoto has ordered both stores to stop selling counterfeit products. In addition, Apple asked that Apple Story be forced to change its name to avoid brand confusion, but Matsumoto has yet to rule on that.
Apple has also requested a list of all people or businesses that bought or sold the counterfeit goods, an order to destroy any of the remaining products, and triple monetary damages.