Victory for Toyo Tires in Tire Infringement case
Toyo Tire & Rubber Company and Toyo Tire USA have claimed that they have won the Tire Infringement case against Doublestar Dong Feng Tyre Co. and Qingdao Doublestar Tire Industrial Co. in Los Angeles Federal Court. The issue behind the case was Doublestar’s sale of the AMP M/T tyre, which the Toyo Tires says is a copy of the best-selling Open Country M/T tyre. Doublestar had previously agreed that another of its tyres infringed Toyo Tires’ OPMT trade dress and that its trade dress was valid.
In 2014, Doublestar entered into a Final Judgment, agreeing to cease the manufacture and sale of the infringing product. When Toyo Tires learned of Doublestar’s sales of the AMP M/T, Toyo Tires brought the current action to seek damages for trade dress infringement, breach of contract and fraud.
“We are pleased that once again, the federal courts have recognized Toyo’s intellectual property rights, which protect Toyo’s R&D efforts in providing the highest quality tyres. Toyo will continue to relentlessly and unwaveringly pursue those who violate our rights,” said Iori Suzuki, President and CEO of Toyo Tires Holdings of Americas Inc.
On April 14, 2018, Judge Cormac Carney granted Toyo Tires’ motion for summary judgment, finding no liability issues for a jury to decide on the infringement and breach claims. All that remains is for a jury to decide the number of damages that Doublestar must pay Toyo Tires, and to decide Toyo Tire’s claim for fraud against Doublestar.
Earlier, in November 2017, Judge Carney held Doublestar in contempt for violating the 2014 Final Judgment and ordered Doublestar to pay Toyo Tires $1.6 million in sanctions. While Doublestar waived its right to appeal this ruling, they have yet to compensate Toyo Tires as ordered by the Federal Court, said Toyo Tires.