Trading firm in criminal raps for Intellectual Property Rights violation

July 16, 2010 12:01 pm 

MANILA, July 15 — A trading firm engaged in the distribution of imported hand tools in the local market has been charged with violation of the Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) law or Republic Act 8293 before the Department of Justice (DOJ).

Herco Trading Inc., headed by its president, Wilfred Co, has been found to be selling fake versions of export products of Kapman Aktiebolag (Kapman AB) such as hacksaw blades and claw hammers since last year.

The complainant, Jairius Abiera, an intellectual property expert representing Kapman AB, discovered Herco's illegal activity following a buy-bust operation conducted on Herco's warehouse in Marilao, Bulacan last March 26.

The ensuing raid, conducted on the strength of a search warrant from the court, yielded 89 fake hacksaw blades and 11 fake claw hammers, both with Bahco and Fish & Hook markings; and 238 empty carton boxes with Fish & Hook markings, among other items.

Earlier, Abiera said, he, together with Chief Inspector Julius Ceasar Mana of the Bulacan criminal investigation and detection team and a market researcher identified as Renato Antonia, conducted a buy-bust operation at Herco's warehouse in Marilao.

He said they were issued a receipt bearing "SPI Marketing Inc." for the claw hammer and hacksaw blade they had bought for P250 and P32.50 apiece, respectively. A check with the Marilao mayor's office revealed that the registered owner of "SPI Marketing Inc." is Herco Trading, Inc./Co Willy.

Also present during the search were warehouseman Roberto Capuchino and logistics officer Lennie Koa of Herco Trading Inc. and Barangay complaint action officer Paulino Macaraeg of Barangay Sta. Rosa II, Marilao, Bulacan.

Abiera said he is Kapman AB's duly authorized attorney- in-fact, empowered to take legal action against persons or businesses suspected of infringing the Swedish firm's trademarks and intellectual property rights.

Kapman AB is the registered owner of "Bahco" trademark and the "Fish & Hook" device marks of hacksaw blades and claw hammers.

He added that Kapman AB is also part of the pioneering Snap-on Group, based in the United States and umbrella corporation of 96 companies in 36 countries worldwide, that also manufactures and markets tools, diagnostics and other equipment.

Abiera pointed out that Snap-on does not have manufacturing operations in the Philippines nor does it have any branding or stamping of brand operations here.

"These facts are known to Herco Trading Inc. as it is one of two of the biggest importers and distributors of Snap-on Singapore in the Philippines.

He said Snap-on Singapore certifies that Bahco and Fish & Hook products are "imported into the Philippines as finished goods already complete with all brandings." (PNA)



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