Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Court Preliminarily Enjoins U.S. Government's Seizure of Items Bearing MONGOLS Membership Mark

Pamela Chestek’s Property, Intangible blog provides an update on the Mongols trademark saga (previously blogged here) that dominated the headlines last October when, after the government seized the registered collective membership mark MONGOLS as part of a U.S. government racketeering indictment against the Mongols Motorcycle Club ("Mongols"), a court entered a broad injunction order which essentially prevented members of the Mongols from wearing any clothing bearing the MONGOLS mark. [Note: while there does exist a second registered trademark for M.C. (and Design), this registered mark was not part of the court’s amended restraining order at issue].

A Member of the Mongols (who was not part of the criminal indictment) brought a civil action seeking injunctive relief against the government from any seizure of his items bearing the MONGOLS mark which identified his membership in the Mongols. The court concluded that the government’s seizure of the trademark under the RICO statute was improper because the government’s RICO indictment was against individual members of the Mongols and not against the entity which owns the MONGOLS mark, and thus the U.S. government could not seize such property under RICO. Accordingly, the court granted the preliminary injunction enjoining the government from seizing any property items bearing the MONGOLS collective membership mark. See Rivera v. United States, Case No. 09-cv-2435 (C.D. Calif. Aug. 3, 2009).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

so what about the members who were not indicted??????????