Amazon sues influencers for selling fake luxury fashion
Amazon is suing two influencers who allegedly sold counterfeit luxury fashion on the behemoth’s platform.
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In a lawsuit filed in the U.S. district court in Washington Kelly Fitzpatrick and Sabrina Kelly-Krejci are accused of linking up with a number of third-party sellers to advertise, promote, and facilitate the sale of fake goods of brands including Chanel, Dior and Gucci.
Fitzpatrick and Kelly-Krejci used their personal social media accounts on Instagram, TikTok and their own websites to promote the counterfeit styles, of which Amazon claims both defendants were “engaged in a sophisticated campaign of false advertising” and unlawfully evaded Amazon’s anti-counterfeiting protections.
Posting images of the designer item next to a more generic style on their IG stories, the pair directed followers to buy through a ‘hidden link’ which took them to an Amazon listing. After receiving an order for the generic item, the sellers would then send out the counterfeit product instead.
According to The Fashion Law both Fitzpatrick and Kelly-Krejci were previously blocked by Amazon for promoting fake goods on its marketplace.
The complaint states the duo would publish videos, photographs and detailed descriptions of clearly infringing products on their social media and other website and apps, with links to listing pages on the Amazon store. The duo refer to the products they promote as “dupes,” a fashion industry term that connotes items that may have similarities to a designer item but that do not copy logos or trademarked features.
The lawsuit further cites if a customer orders a seemingly non-infringing item they would receive a counterfeit fashion product, the very essence of false advertising, as the product the Defendants are promoting are simply a placeholder designed to evade Amazon’s counterfeit detection systems. When Instagram and other apps and websites removed their social media accounts, the Defendants would create new accounts to continue these illicit activities, cites the claim.
The case is Amazon versus Fitzpatrick.
Article source: Scribd, The Fashion Law; Image via Scribd.