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23 October 2014Trademarks

Mystery surrounds future of Chanel’s Ghostbusters suit

A dispute that luxury brand Chanel brought against the owner of a parody clothing company has been thrown into doubt after the defendant claimed the complaint had been withdrawn.

Jeanine Heller, owner of the What About Yves (WAY) clothing brand, claimed the French company had withdrawn its complaint centring on a t-shirt that used its signature double C logo alongside a character from TV series Ghostbusters.

According to Chanel’s lawsuit, filed earlier this month at the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, Heller used the “clearly recognisable” ‘CC’ trademark because of its “iconic status” in order to bring to mind the Chanel brand.

Heller said at the time that she would continue to sell the items until a resolution was reached, but would not be producing them anymore.

But, according to fashion website The Fashion Law, Heller has now said the lawsuit was being withdrawn because Chanel had sued the wrong party.

“I sold my majority stake [in WAY] this past year, but do still hold ownership within the brand.  I personally have never done business as ‘WAY.’ It is a DE Corp, and Chanel must pursue legal complaints against the corporation and not an owner or officer,” Heller said in a statement.

She added: “You would think with a company such as Chanel, their attorneys would do research before filing a trivial lawsuit.”

Chanel did not comment but The Fashion Law later reported that, contrary to Heller’s statement, the case is still listed as pending in the district court’s records, with no motion to dismiss being filed.

WIPR has contacted the attorneys representing Heller.

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