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Chinese pirated office chairs 'shredded'

22 April 2009

Office furniture manufacturer Sedus Stoll from Germany recently uncovered a product piracy operation in Hong Kong – and successfully put an end to it.

A Chinese firm sold the “LegCo” (Legislative Council – the Parliament in Hong Kong) 50 office swivel chairs in 2005 and 2006, which were practically identical in their technical function and appearance to the Sedus “open up” model. Sedus’ local representation alerted the Hong Kong customs and lodged an infringement of Sedus Stoll’s copyright.

Following a lengthy battle, the responsible court in Hong Kong gave its ruling on 19 March 2009: the perpetrators were punished with a hefty fine. At the same time, the court also ruled that all of the replica swivel chairs be destroyed.

This court ruling not only highlights the constructive cooperation with the customs authorities in Hong Kong, it is also impressive for the fact that they awarded the Sedus 'open up' a copyright. This is only possible for furniture with a design which considerably exceeds the standard. The court ruling is thus also a solid indication of the particular design of the Sedus chair.

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