eBay pays out to Louis Vuitton

eBay fined £30 million for selling designer fakes

EBay has been ordered to pay out £31.5 million to French Luxury goods company LVMH, after the auction site was found guilty of failing to prevent the sale of fake designer goods.

The two-year court battle saw LVMH present evidence that during the second quarter of 2006, 90% of 300,00

items listed as Dior on eBay and 150,000 Louis Vuitton

handbags were in fact

counterfeit.

The Paris Commercial Court put eBay at ‘serious fault’ for not

keeping fake designer products off of the site, and ruled that eBay had

damaged the reputation of LVMH brands by its sale of counterfeit goods.

The auction site was ordered to pay the highest sum to Louis Vuitton, with further payments made to LVMH Christian Dior Couture.

In a landmark ruling the site has also been banned from selling any LVMH brand perfumes, whether genuine or fake, and was ordered to make payments to four of the house’s perfume brands: Christian Dior, Givenchy, Kenzo and Guerlain.

The court ruled that eBay was not qualified to sell the perfumes, which should only be sold by trained staff.

The landmark ruling could open the doors for other design houses to take action against the US site, although eBay will appeal the ruling calling it ‘indecent’.

A spokeswoman commented, ‘This ruling is not about our fight against counterfeits. It is about an attempt by LVMH to protect uncompetitive commercial practices at the expense of consumer choice and the livelihoods of law-abiding sellers that eBay empowers every day. We will fight this ruling on their behalf.’

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