High fashion brands are known for vigilantly monitoring unauthorized uses of their intellectual property and taking legal action. So, too, is the Hells Angels, the outlaw motorcycle gang, known for manslaughter, drug smuggling, and suing Alexander McQueen in 2010 for copying a number of its federally registered trademarks, including its “death head” mark.
And the motorcycle gang is at it again. You may recall that the Hells Angels’ Australian arm filed suit against Aussie tech start-up Redouble last year for allegedly infringing a number of its trademarks. The Angels filed suit in an Australian federal court this past October after Redouble, an “online art community” began offering several products, including t-shirts and posters, that allegedly depicted the club’s trademarks. Redbubble chief executive Martin Hosking responded to the suit by removing the purportedly infringing goods from the company’s site, but the Hells Angels are not satisfied. According to their complaint, Redouble profited from the sale of goods bearing the club’s trademark and as a result, they are seeking compensation in connection therewith.
Despite alleged attempts to settle the case made by the Angel’s intellectual property counsel, Dimitrious Eliats, who said “We don’t want to force anyone or have them fall on their sword or anything,” the case is still underway. And according to court documents, the Angels must come up with $50,000 within a month if they want to keep their legal battle afloat. Federal Justice Andrew Greenwood has ordered the Aussie club to deposit the cash in a bank account or obtain a bank guarantee for the money before it moves ahead. The $50,000 will serve as a security deposit of sorts for the payment of costs in case the Angel’s legal action against the online business proves fruitless.