Up until recently, you can go into your local Costco and purchase a ‘Tiffany’ ring for a fraction of the price.
However, it was discovered that these rings advertised as “Tiffany,” were actually fake, knock-off diamonds. The real Tiffany & Co. would never discount a diamond, and many buyers at Costco were tricked into believing they were getting the real thing. It wasn’t until a customer contacted Tiffany’s regarding their purchase that it all became clear.
“In this particular case there is enormous room for confusion among consumers because Costco does sell a lot of big brands at deep discounts,” a spokesperson from ABC News said. Costco has since removed all Tiffany labels, but Tiffany is suing for additional monetary damages, and it is uncertain whether customers will sue as well.
To date, Costco Wholesale Corporation should pay Tiffany & Co. $5.5 million for selling fake rings. The case began on September 20 to determine the amount of damages Costco is liable for, and U.S. District Judge Laura Taylor Swain says that Costco had “willfully infringed Tiffany’s trademark by selling rings bearing the luxury retailer’s name.”
Tiffany is also entitled to punitive damages that are not included in the $5.5 million figure, and it “represents the amount of profit Costco made from the sale of the rings that would fairly compensate Tiffany,” according to Reuters.
Judge Swain found that Costco created confusion for consumers by using the word “Tiffany” on signs in display cases, and the store’s jewelry buyers even asked vendors to copy Tiffany designs.
This case is still ongoing…
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[Featured Image Credit: Youtube- ABC News]