In the case of Ho Tack Sien & Ors v Rotta Research Laboratorium SpA & Anor, the respondent manufactured a drug called Viartril-S (glucosamine sulphate) used in the treatment of osteoarthritis.
The respondent had registered the ‘Viartril-S’ mark in Malaysia for pharmaceutical products in 1976.
The first two appellants were ex-employees of the respondent’s authorised distributor in Malaysia. During their employment, the appellants were privy to confidential information relating to the distribution network, customer lists, sales figures and marketing strategy of Viartril-S and its manufacturing process.
One of the appellants and her father-in-law subsequently set up the third appellant, a company which dealt largely in the sale of pharmaceutical products. The third appellant registered the trademark ‘Artril 250’ in 2002 for pharmaceutical products, and distributed and sold that product in Malaysia.
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Ho Tack Sien & Ors v Rotta Research Laboratorium SpA & Anor, registrar evidence, trademark expungement