A week or so back, we told you about the legal wrangle surrounding the maker of the Zoraki M197 blank firing pistol. Mr. Confino’s being sued by GLOCK for allegedly infringing on their world famous handgun design, and Maxsell Corporation’s subsequent plea to the internet. I just received an official comment from GLOCK HQ on the situation. It looks like this may be an issue of a defendant playing to the crowd for sympathy . . .
Although GLOCK, lnc. normally does not Comment about pending litigation, it has come to GLOCK’S attention that Mr. Confino owner of Maxsell Corporation is using the Worldwide Web to post statements that GLOCK considers to be misleading, false, defamatory and completely without merit.
GLOCK is the owner of many valuable designs, trademarks, and copyrights associated with its famous brand of firearms. GLOCK has used the trade dress for GLOCK pistols continuously throughout the United States since at least December 1985. GLOCK has invested vast resources to establish their intellectual property portfolio and the goodwill associated therein. Because of GLOCK’s popularity, extensive demand exists for GLOCK related products. Consequently, the GLOCK patents, trademarks, trade dress and other proprietary rights may not be used Without GLOCK’s express Written permission.
After unsuccessful negotiations, GLOCK has filed a lawsuit in the Northern District of Georgia, Rome Division, against Corporation, Civil Action No. 4:12-cv-001113-RLV. The
lawsuit involves claims for trade dress infringement, trade dress dilution, and unfair competition based on Maxsell Corporation’s sales of unauthorized GLOCK replicas.
lt should be noted that Maxsell Corporation entered into a consent agreement with the court in 2000 in exchange for a release from the GLOCK V. Bruni litigation, Civil Action No. 4 00-CV-120-HLM, whereby it acknowledged GLOCK’s trade dress rights and agreed not to sell unauthorized GLOCK replicas (copy attached). When GLOCK discovered Maxsell Corporation had violated its settlement agreement, GLOCK contacted Maxsell Corporation to amicably resolve this matter Without litigation. However, Confino made the business decision not to accept GLOCK’s settlement offer forcing GLOCK to seek remedy through the court.
Glock provided me with the court documents from their previous judicial interaction, and according to the ruling, Maxsell Corp was stopped from producing a different Glock-like handgun at that time and told not to make anything that infringed on their trade dress again.
Whether this specific blank-firing handgun actually violates their trade dress rights is open to debate, but if Samsung can get a smack-down from Apple over their similarly different products, there’s a good chance that this gun will indeed be found to be an infringement.
According to the Plastic Fantastic, Mr. Confino is trying to lie his way into the hearts and minds of the internet to get the court to rule in his favor. We’ll keep you in the loop if there are any more developments.