Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie Sues Trademark Infringers of Tapatio Hot Sauce Over Marijuana Infused Sauce
LOS ANGELES- Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie filed two separate complaints on October 13, 2017, in the United States District Court for the Central District of California on behalf of client Tapatio Foods LLC, producer of well-known hot sauce Tapatio.
The complaints against Ingrid Veronica Ponce, Mario Mendizabal, Dorian Huerta, and TCG Industries and separately Isaac Granados, allege federal trademark infringement, federal unfair competition, trademark dilution by tarnishment, and California statutory unfair competition for the intentional and illegal use of the confusingly similar trademark “Trapatio” in conjunction with a deliberately similar Charro design to sell a THC infused hot sauce.
“Tapatio is a family-owned company that has worked very hard to build its brand and reputation as one of America’s favorite hot sauces. It is unfortunate that the infringers would blatantly free ride on the goodwill developed by Tapatio over decades to promote an illegal product,” said intellectual property partner Gary Nelson, lead litigation counsel for Tapatio. “We will vigorously defend the unauthorized use of Tapatio’s brand and image and aggressively pursue those who infringe its iconic trademark.”
In its complaints Tapatio seeks: a permanent injunction restraining defendants, any companies or business that they own from engaging in any further trademark infringement, unfair competition and dilution; an order commanding Veronica Ponce to abandon a ’264 Application she filed for the confusingly similar “Trapatio” mark; an order commanding the United States Patent and Trademark Office to deny registration to the mark that is the subject of the ’264 Application; a monetary award for corrective advertising in an amount to rectify all the harm and damages to Tapatio, disgorgement of any profits the defendants enjoyed as a result of the infringement; all damages sustained by Tapatio as a result of Defendants’ infringement and unlawful actions; and Treble damages under the Lanham Act.
Having represented Tapatio Foods LLC for over twenty years, intellectual property partner Anne Wang has been instrumental in protecting Tapatio’s intellectual property rights during the tremendous growth in popularity of the TAPATIO brand within the United States, Central and South America and during the expansion of its product line from hot sauce to other food products and consumer novelty goods.
About Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP
Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP is an Am Law 200 commercial law firm for handling complex matters in litigation, intellectual property, business transactions, gaming, government relations and other practice areas. Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie offices are located in Albuquerque, Colorado Springs, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Irvine, Phoenix, Reno, Silicon Valley and Tucson. For more information, visit lrrc.com.