Juul Labs filed six trademark-infringement lawsuits in five states against shop owners it says are using the Juul name to sell products that are “fake, copied, and non-genuine versions of Juul Products and related packaging.”
The company said as many as 20 suits will be filed in the next 60 days in an effort to stop the “worst offenders” among retailers selling counterfeit e-cigarettes, part of an effort to shore up its bid with regulators to stay in the U.S. market, according to an article on Bloomberg.com.
The new legal round follow some four dozen lawsuits filed in July against companies Juul says are copying its patented designs for vaping cartridges. The U.S. International Trade Commission is considering a Juul request to block imports and sales of imported, unauthorized cartridges.
The trademark suits accuse companies of selling counterfeits and “gray market” products, meaning they were made for overseas markets but brought into the U.S. The lawsuits were filed in Alabama, New Hampshire, New York, Tennessee, and Texas, according to the article.
The suits are part of Juul’s “global enforcement program directed at disrupting the illicit trade of black-market vapor products to create a more responsible marketplace for current adult users while addressing under-age use,” the company said in a statement.
Juul is seeking orders that would halt sales, the profits from the unauthorized sales, and $2 million for each trademark violation.