World renown jeweler, Tiffany & Co. is suing big box discount retailer Costco for fraud. The lawsuit is in connection with the retailer marketing, and selling replica jewelry under an assumed Tiffany brand name, as reported on Feb. 15, by ABC News.
Unbeknownst to Tiffany, Costco had apparently been selling different styles of rings for many years that it has falsely identified on in-store signage as 'Tiffany'" and "in warehouse stores around the United States," the lawsuit stated.
In the lawsuit against Costco, Tiffany & Company are seeking damages for trademark infringement, counterfeiting, deceptive business practice, and false advertising.
The Jeweler has no business relationship with Costco and is also suing the discount warehouses for "injury" to its business reputation.
The counterfeiting was discovered after a female Tiffany customer notified the jeweler of her "disappointment" at seeing the Tiffany brand, engagement ring at the Costco client level.
The attorney representing Tiffany speculated on the number of engagement rings sold at Costco, duping customers into thinking that they are buying authentic Tiffany merchandise.
Jeffery Mitchell, the attorney for Tiffany is hoping that the legal action will expose the quantity of fake Tiffany merchandise, sold by Costco.
This is not the first lawsuit for Costco brought forth by a designer brand. Reportedly, Costco has been the subject of lawsuits by retail companies, including Calvin Klein, for allegedly hurting higher-end brand names by selling products at low prices.