A company in Japan is suing two companies and their owner on Saipan for allegedly using its logo without its permission.
Yoshitsu Co. Ltd. is suing American Create Beauty Corp., American Dong Sheng Corp., Weidong Guo, and 10 unnamed agencies/persons for trademark counterfeiting, trademark infringement, false designation of origin and fake descriptions and representations, unfair or deceptive trade act or practice, and trademark infringement.
Guo is the president and owner of both American Create and American Dong Sheng.
YST, through counsel Cong Nie, asked the U.S. District Court for the NMI to hold American Create, American Dong Sheng, Guo, and co-defendants to pay up to $2 million for each trademark that they have counterfeited and/or infringed.
The plaintiff is demanding attorney’s fees and court costs.
YCT also asked the court to stop the defendants from using the trademark and to stop the defendants from any conduct that could confuse or deceive YST’s customers or injure its reputation.
The plaintiff wants the court to declare that the defendants have violated the Lanham Act and have engaged in unfair or deceptive acts or practices under the CNMI Consumer Protection Act, and have engaged in trademark infringement under the common law of the CNMI.
According to Nie in the complaint, YCT is the sole owner of a design trademark that read “Tokyo Seikatsukan” in Japanese, and translates to “Tokyo Lifestyle Store” in English.
Nie said the characters of the design can be understood by a person who speaks either Japanese or Chinese.
Nie said the trademark is registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
YST started using the trademark in 2016 by opening and operating a chain of drugstores in Japan and using the trademark to identify its stores.
In April 2018, Nie said, YST granted a revocable, nonexclusive license to American Create Beauty and American Dong Sheng to use the trademark in the U.S.
Nie said that American Create Beauty and American Dong Sheng then started operating two drug and cosmetic stores in Garapan, one on Coral Tree Avenue and another on Beach Road.
Nie said that that license to use the trademark was revoked last Feb. 6, 2019, effective March 6, 2019. As a result, the lawyer said, starting on March 6, 2019, the two companies no longer have YST’s permission to use the trademark.
However, Nie said, to date, neither American Create Beauty and American Dong Sheng have stopped using the logo and have still not taken down the logo from their stores or their van.