eBay fined for 'brokering' fake items

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Ebay has been fined for allowing the sale of fake handbags and perfume.

According to statements from the companies involved, the online auction site will have to pay the luxury goods firm LVMH for allowing the distribution of counterfeit copies of its designs, however it is appealing.

The French court ordered eBay to pay 38.6 million euros after LVMH, which counts the exclusive brands Moet & Chandon and Louis Vuitton amongst its roster, complained that its French site was not doing enough to stop the sale of copies of its products.

"For the first time in France it clearly states the principle under which auction sites that operate on the web have to ensure that their activities do not permit unlawful dealingsā€¦ eBay is not a host, but a broker."

"The verdict represents an important step in the protection of brands and designs against parasitic practices. The court brings an important contribution to the protection of creative works which make up an important part of our national heritage and generate many jobs in France."

This is the second recent penalty placed on eBay in France. In early June the auction site was fined for the distribution of fake Hermes handbags.
itweek.co.uk @ 2010 Incisive Media

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