NATURE OF THE ACTION
This is an action at law and in equity for trademark infringement, unfaircompetition and false designation of origin, and trademark dilution arising under sections32 and 43 of the Federal Trademark Act of 1946 (the “Lanham Act”), 15 U.S.C. §§ 1114,1125; unfair or deceptive trade practices arising under N.C. Gen. Stat. §§ 75-1
;and trademark infringement and unfair competition arising under the common law of theState of North Carolina.2.
As more fully described below, without RII’s authorization, Defendantshave used and continue to use trademarks that are colorable imitations of, and areconfusingly similar to, RII’s famous and federally-registered CAMEL trademarks inconnection with the sale of Defendants’ liquid nicotine products via the Internet. Oninformation and belief, Defendants have been and continue to be engaged in the businessof operating Internet websites, including those displayed at <www.e-cigarettedirect.com>(“E-Cigarette Website”) and <www.veppocig.com> (“Veppo Website”) (collectively,“Defendants’ Websites”), through which Defendants actively promote and sell, amongother items, flavored liquid nicotine products for use with electronic cigarettes.3.
On information and belief, without RII’s authorization, Defendants haveused RII’s famous and federally-registered CAMEL trademarks, or colorable imitationsthereof, in the advertising and sale of a liquid nicotine product that Defendants claim hasa “Camel like” flavor, examples of which are shown below:
Case 1:11-cv-00581 Document 1 Filed 07/20/11 Pae 2 of 21