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Aquazzura files another lawsuit over heel designs

Aquazzura files another lawsuit over heel designs

Aquazzura has filed a lawsuit against Steve Madden alleging design infringement.

The Italian luxury footwear firm is going after the American shoe company, making three claims for trade dress infringement as well as federal and state law claims of unfair competition in a Manhattan federal court. The lawsuit also alleges violation of New York’s laws regarding deceptive and unfair trade practices, as well as infringement of a design patent.

It is the second lawsuit filed by Aquazzura in recent days, with the company also filing a similar lawsuit against Ivanka Trump and the company's licensee last week (21Jun16). Aquazzura took legal action against Trump's Hettie sandal, alleging that it is almost identical to the brand's fringed Wild Thing style.

The Steve Madden designs that were alleged to be infringing are Sharliet, claimed to be similar to Aquazzura’s Sexy Thing, a stiletto bootie, with a cutout, open toe and leather tie closure at the back of the ankle; Sassey, said to be like Aquazzura’s Wild Thing, a stiletto heel featuring an open toe, fringing and ankle-wrap closure with tassel; and Lecrew, which Aquazzura thinks has a resemblance to its Christy design, a pointed-toe shoe with scalloped sides. The court document also claims that Steve Madden copied shoe designs in the past, noting similarities between two Steve Madden designs sold in 2014.

"Defendant’s flagrant copying of multiple of Plaintiff’s well-known designs is likely to cause consumers to falsely believe that Defendant’s products come from or otherwise are associated with Plaintiff and to harm Plaintiff and the substantial goodwill it has developed in its proprietary designs and trade dress," the lawsuit said, according to WWD.

Aquazzura, which was founded in 2011 by designer Edgardo Osorio, is seeking an injunction barring the manufacture and sale of the infringing styles as well as damages. Steve Madden is yet to comment on the lawsuit.

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