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Wild Encantos sues Caribbean Retail Ventures over plush toy knockoffs

The company is seeking more than $3 million in damages.

WE LLC, which does business as Wild Encantos, has filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against Caribbean Retail Ventures Inc. for allegedly producing and selling imitations of its unique plush toys depicting the coquí and Puerto Rican parrot, at Always 99 stores throughout the island.

Wild Encantos is claiming damages exceeding $3 million, according to the lawsuit filed last week in the U.S. District Court for the District of Puerto Rico.

“The appearance and other features of the Wild Encantos products are inherently distinctive and serve to identify Wild Encantos as the source of products bearing the Wild Encantos products,” the plaintiff alleges in its complaint, where it accuses the Caguas-based defendant of being “unlawfully engaged in the manufacture, importation, distribution, sale and/or offer for sale of counterfeit merchandise bearing exact copies and/or colorable duplications of plaintiffs’ copyrights.”

While Wild Encantos sought a temporary restraining order that Judge Camille L. Vélez-Rivé denied, the company also requested an order for seizure, preliminary and permanent injunctions, and compensation for damages, costs and attorneys’ fees as the Copyright Act allows.

“Plaintiff believes that these lower quality infringing plush toy coquís and parrots cost Defendants approximately $1 each, manufactured and delivered to Puerto Rico. Defendants are selling the infringing products for $3.99 each,” Wild Encantos asserts in the filing.

The company told the court that it believes “Defendants have up to 10,000 such infringing plush toys among their stores and whatever warehouse facilities they have.”

Wild Encantos stated that it never granted Caribbean Retail Ventures permission to replicate, import, copy or sell any plush toys or related merchandise with its copyrighted designs. Nor did it authorize the distribution of its copyrighted properties.

“Unless Defendants’ acts are enjoined and the illicit counterfeiters of the Plaintiff’s copyrighted properties are stopped, it is highly probable that one or more of the Defendants, or others under their direction, will manufacture, distribute, sell, or offer for sale additional plush toys and related merchandise which bear the Plaintiff’s copyrighted properties causing further irreparable injury to Plaintiff,” Wild Encantos claimed in lawsuit.

Author Details
Author Details
Business reporter with 30 years of experience writing for weekly and daily newspapers, as well as trade publications in Puerto Rico. My list of former employers includes Caribbean Business, The San Juan Star, and the Puerto Rico Daily Sun, among others. My areas of expertise include telecommunications, technology, retail, agriculture, tourism, banking and most other segments of Puerto Rico’s economy.

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