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East West, LLC v Rahman

East West, LLC v Rahman

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Published by propertyintangible

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Published by: propertyintangible on Sep 23, 2012
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05/13/2014

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THEEASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIAAlexandria DivisionEAST WEST, LLC d/b/aCARIBBEAN CRESCENT,
 
Plaintiff,v.SHAH RAHMAN,andCARIBBEAN CRESCENT, INC.Defendants.))))))))))
 
CARIBBEAN CRESCENT, INC.,Counterclaimant and Third-Party Plaintiff,v.EAST WEST, LLC, d/b/aCARIBBEAN CRESCENT,Counter-Defendant,andNAEEM ZAI,andMOHAMMED SADIQ,Third-Party Defendants.
 
)))))) 1:11cv1380 (JCC/TCB)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))
Case 1:11-cv-01380-JCC-TCB Document 180 Filed 09/13/12 Page 1 of 53 PageID# 4235
 
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 M E M O R A N D U M O P I N I O N
 This matter is before the Court on Plaintiff’s and Third-Party Defendants’ Motion for Partial Summary Judgment [Dkt. 123](“Plaintiff’s Motion”) and Defendants’ Motion for SummaryJudgment [Dkt. 114] (“Defendants’ Motion”)(collectively, “theMotions”). For the following reasons, this Court will rule onthe Motions as follows.
I. Background 
This case arises out of a business dispute involvingalleged acts of trademark and trade name infringement, as wellas breach of contract.A. The PartiesPlaintiff East West, LLC (“East West”) sells Jamaican andSouth Asian-themed food products in the Washington, D.C.metropolitan area and surrounding communities. (Second AmendedComplaint (“SAC”) [Dkt. 59] ¶ 2.) Third-Party Defendants NaeemZai and Mohammad Sadiq are East West’s President and VicePresident, respectively. Defendant Caribbean Crescent, Inc. isa Virginia Corporation that advertises and sells a variety ofJamaican, Indian, Asian and other food products. Defendant ShahRahman is President of Caribbean Crescent, Inc.B. Factual BackgroundIn June 2003, Plaintiff East West and Third-PartyDefendants (collectively, the “Buyers”) entered into an
Case 1:11-cv-01380-JCC-TCB Document 180 Filed 09/13/12 Page 2 of 53 PageID# 4236
 
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“Agreement for Sale of Inventory/Assets” (the “Sale Agreement”)with Defendant in which they agreed to purchase the “businessassets known as Caribbean Crescent.” (SAC ¶ 13; Ex. A (“SaleAgreement”) at 1.) Defendants agreed to deliver to the Buyersall rights, title, and interest in the business assets known asCaribbean Crescent including the common law trademark CARIBBEANCRESCENT (“the CARIBBEAN CRESCENT Mark” or “the Mark”) and thetrade name Caribbean Crescent. (SAC ¶¶ 17-18, 21; SaleAgreement § 1.)The Sale Agreement contained a non-compete provision (the“Non-Compete Agreement”), in which Defendants agreed not tocompete with the business being sold to the Buyers for a periodof five years and within a five mile radius of the WashingtonMetropolitan Area. (Sale Agreement 21.) Defendants wereentitled to “use [the] Carribean Crescent [as opposed toCaribbean Crescent] trade name,” and to “continue [to] trade andmarket products and services as Carribean Crescent [as opposedto Caribbean Crescent] outside the Washington Metropolitan Area.”(
Id 
.)On June 17, 2003, the parties closed on the Sale Agreement.(SAC ¶ 34.) The Buyers purchased the business assets known asCaribbean Crescent as well as Defendants’ remaining inventory ofgoods. (SAC ¶¶ 31, 36.) The document was signed by DefendantShah Rahman on behalf of Caribbean Crescent. The Buyers paid
Case 1:11-cv-01380-JCC-TCB Document 180 Filed 09/13/12 Page 3 of 53 PageID# 4237

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