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Case 2:19-at-00558 Document 1 Filed 07/01/19 Page 1 of 9

1 Mark D. Kremer(SB# 100978)


m.kremer(^.conklela\v.com
2 Zachaiy Pa^(SB# 293885)
z.page(^conklelaw.com
3 Sherron Wi^ins(SB# 321819)
s.wigginsimconklelaw.com
4 CONi^E,KMMBR & BNGBL
Professional Law Corporation
5 3130 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 500
Santa Monica, California 90403-2351
6 Phone:(310)998-9100 • Fax:(310)998-9109
7 Roy Anderson(SB# 107153)
rla@patentattorney,us
8 Wagner, Anderson & Bright, P.C.
15901 Viewpoint Rd.
9 Riverside CA 92504
Phone:(818)249-9300
10 Fax: (818)249-9335
11 Attorneys for American International
Industries
12

13 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

14 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA,SACRAMENTO DIVISION


15
AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL CASE No.
16 INDUSTRIES,a California General
Partnership, COMPLAINT FOR
17 DECLARATORY RELIEF
Plaintiff,
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SHARIDAN STILES,an individual.
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Defendant.
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0067.24l\9906

COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF


Case 2:19-at-00558 Document 1 Filed 07/01/19 Page 2 of 9

1 Plaintiff American Industries International ("Plaintiff), by and through its


2 attorneys,for its Complaint against Defendant Sharidan Stiles("Defendant"),alleges as
3 follows:

5 SUMMARY OF CLAIM

6 1. For nearly five years. Plaintiff American International Industries and


7 Defendant Sharidan Stiles have been involved in litigation relating to Defendant's
8 patent infringement claims arising from the manufacture and sale of personal razor
9 products, including Plaintiffs product known as the "Ardell Precision Shaper." On
10 September 25 ,2014, Defendant filed complaint in the Eastern District of California
11 against Plaintiffand its retailer, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.(currently known as "Walmart,
12 Inc." and referred to herein as "Walmart"). See Stiles v. Walmart Stores, Inc., et al.,
13 E.D. Cal. Case No. 14-CV-2234-GEB-CMK(the "Pending California Action").' The
14 Pending California Action initially asserted claims for trade secret and patent
15 infringement arising from the sale of both the Ardell Precision Shaper and Plaintiffs
16 "Salon Perfect Micro Razor" product, and was later amended to include additional
17 claims for trade dress infringement and antitrust violations. The Pending California
18 Action is currently ongoing in the Eastern District ofCalifornia before Judge Morrison
19 C. England, Jr.
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'The litigation between Plaintiff and Defendant initially began with Defendant's filing ofa
24 complaint for trademark infringement, unfair competition and antitrust violations on July 11,2014,
also in the Eastern District of California. See Stiles, et al. v. Walmart Stores, Inc., et al, E.D. Cal.
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Case No. 14-CV-1637-JAM-CMK (the "Initial California Action"). Both Plaintiff and its retailer
26 Walmart were named as defendants in the Initial California Action. The Initial California Action did
not directly implicate Plaintiffs Ardell Precision Shaper product, but focused instead on Plaintiffs
27 "Salon Perfect Micro Razor" product. Defendant ultimately dismissed the Initial California Action
shortly afler filing the Pending Califomia Action.
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0067.241\9906 .O.
COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF
Case 2:19-at-00558 Document 1 Filed 07/01/19 Page 3 of 9

1 2. Despite the fact that Defendant long ago elected to pursue her claims
2 arising from Plaintiffs Ardell Precision Shaper Product in the Eastern District of
3 California, on June 6 and 7, 2019, Defendant filed three new actions in the Eastern
4 District of Texas (referred to herein as the "Texas Actions") asserting patent
5 infringement claims against Plaintiffs retailers—^Target, CVS and Walmart—arising
6 from the sale of the Ardell Precision Shaper product. In the Texas Actions against
7 Target and CVS,Defendant claims infringement ofthe very same patent asserted in the
8 Pending California Action, as well as a continuation ofthat same patent, arising from
9 sales of Plaintiffs Ardell Precision Shaper product by Target and CVS. In the Texas
10 Action against Walmart, Defendant claims infringement of the continuation patent
11 arising from the sale ofPlaintiffs Ardell Precision Shaper product by Walmart.
12

13 3. By this Complaint, Plaintiff seeks a declaratory judgment of non-


14 infringement ofDefendant's patents,so that Defendant's purported patent infringement
15 claims may be adjudicated in the district originally selected by Defendant: the Eastern
16 District of California.

17

18 PARTIES

19 4. Plaintiff is a California General Partnership, with its principal place of


20 business at 2220 Caspar Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90040.
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22 5. Upon information and belief, Defendant Sharidan Stiles is an individual


23 who resides and does business in Redding, California and is a citizen of California.
24

25 JURISDICTION AND VENUE

26 6. Jurisdiction ofthis Court arises under the Declaratory Judgment Act, 28


27 U.S.C. §§ 2201 and 2202,and the patent laws ofthe United States,35 U.S.C.§ 1 etseq.
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COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF
Case 2:19-at-00558 Document 1 Filed 07/01/19 Page 4 of 9

1 7. This court has original jurisdiction over the subject matter ofthis action
2 pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331, 1338(a), 2201, and 2202.
3

4 8. Upon information and belief, personal jurisdiction over Defendant is


5 proper in this District under 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b) because Defendant at all relevant
6 times resided in this judicial district, and Plaintiff regularly conducts business in this
7 judicial district. Moreover,Defendant has submitted to thejurisdiction ofthis Court by
8 virtue of her filing of the Initial California Action and the Pending California Action
9 nearly five years ago.
10

11 FACTS

12 9. United States Patent Number 9,707,689 ("the '689 Patent), entitled


13 Personal Styling Razor, names Sharidan Stiles as the inventor and has an issue date of
14 July 18, 2017. Attached as Exhibit A is a copy of the '689 Patent.
15

16 10. Defendant Sharidan Stiles claims to be the owner of all right, title, and
17 interest in the '689 Patent.

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19 11. The'689 Patent is directed to a razor for removing unwanted hair from the
20 body and is a continuation patent claiming priority to U.S.Patent Application Number
21 11/775,688 issued as U.S. Patent No. 9,108,329 ("the '329 Patent") on August 18,
22 2015. The specification ofthe'689 and '329 patents are identical,the patent claims are
23 substantially similar in scope and the '689 Patent is subject to a terminal disclaimer
24 which by which Defendant agreed that the '689 Patent "shall be enforceable only for
25 and during such period that it and [the'329 Patent] are commonly owned." Attached as
26 Exhibit B and C are a copy of the '329 Patent and the Terminal Disclaimer,
27 respectively.
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COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF
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1 12. On September 25,2014,Defendant filed a complaint against Plaintiffand


2 its customer, Wal-Mart Stores,Inc.(currently known as"Walmart,Inc." and referred to
3 herein as"Walmart")in this district alleging direct infringement ofthe'329 Patent and
4 U.S. Design Patent Number D542,468, among other causes of action (the "Pending
5 California Action"). See Stiles, et at. v. Walmart, Inc., et al., Case No. 14-CV-02234-
6 MCE-CMK (E.D. Cal. filed Sept. 25, 2014).
7

8 13. In the complaint and amendments filed thereafter by Defendant in the


9 Pending California Action, Defendant alleged that Plaintiffs Ardell Brow Precision
10 Shaper ("the Accused Product") infringes the '329 Patent. At no point during the
11 pendency of the Pending California Action did Defendant seek to add claims arising
12 from the '689 Patent, nor did Defendant even meet and confer with Plaintiff or
13 Walmart's counsel about amending her claims in the Pending California Action to add
14 the '689 Patent.

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16 14. On June 6,2019,Defendant filed three separate, but substantively identical


17 complaints in the Eastern District ofTexas against Plaintiffs customers Target Corp.
18 ("Target"),CVS Pharmacy Inc.("CVS"),and Walmart. The complaints against Target
19 and CVS filed by Defendant in Texas allege direct infringement ofthe '329 and'689
20 Patents by and through their sale ofthe Accused Product. Stiles v. Target Corp., Case
21 No.4:19-CV-00417-ALM(E.D. Tex.filed June 6,2019);Stiles v. CVSPharmacy Inc.,
22 Case No. 4:19-cv-00418-ALM (E.D. Tex. filed June 7, 2019). The complaint against
23 Walmart filed by Defendant in Texas alleges direct infringement of the '689 Patent.
24 Stiles V. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Case No. 4:19-cv-00420-ALM (E.D. Tex. filed June
25 7,2019). The three actions filed by Defendant in Texas are referred to collectively
26 herein as the "Texas Actions." Copies of the complaints in the Texas Actions are
27 attached hereto as Exhibits D,E and F.
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COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF
Case 2:19-at-00558 Document 1 Filed 07/01/19 Page 6 of 9

1 15. In each of the Texas Actions, Defendant affirmatively alleges that


2 "Ardell," a personal care products brand owned by Plaintiff, supplied the Accused
3 Products to Target, CVS and Walmart.{See Ex. C at 5, 28; Ex. D at 5,27; Ex.E
4 at 1116,41).
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6 16. Target, CVS and Walmart are Plaintiffs customers that distribute and sell
7 the Accused Product. Plaintiff currently, and at all relevant times, manufactures,
8 supplies and/or distributes the Accused Product for sale at Target, CVS and Walmart.
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10 17. Target,CVS and Walmart have each contacted Plaintiffto demand defense
11 and indemnification by Plaintiffagainst Defendants' allegations in the Texas Actions.
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13 18. By virtue of the foregoing, there is an actual and continuing justiciable


14 controversy between the parties and within this Court'sjurisdiction under 28 U.S.C.§§
15 2201 and 2202 as to Defendant's right to a patent monopoly, as to the validity,
16 enforceability and scope of her patent rights against Plaintiff, and as to whether the
17 Accused Product infringes the '689 Patent. Absent a declaration of non-infringement
18 and/or invalidity and enforceability ofthe '689 Patent, Defendant may cause Plaintiff
19 irreparable injury and damages resulting from the manufacture ofthe Accused Product.
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21 FIRST CAUSE OF ACTION


DECLARATORY JUDGMENT OF INVALIDITY AND/OR NON-
22 INFRINGEMENT
AGAINST DEFENDANT SHARIDAN STILES
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19. Plaintiffincorporates by reference the allegations set forth in paragraphs 1
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through 18 ofthis Complaint.
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C067.241\9906

COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF


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1 20. A judicial declaration is necessary and appropriate so that Plaintiff may


2 ascertain its rights as to the '689 patent and its manufacture and sale of the Accused
3 Product.

5 21. Plaintiffhas not in the past,and does not now,make,use,sell, offer to sell,
6 or import any products that infringe any valid claim ofthe '689 patent,either directly or
7 indirectly, and Plaintiffdoes not and has not infringed, contributed to the infringement
8 of, or induced infringement of any valid claim of the '689 patent.
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10 22. In particular,the Accused Product does not infringe any valid claim ofthe
11 '689 patent, either directly or indirectly, and Plaintiffs manufacture and sale of the
12 Accused Product does not and has not infringed, contributed to the infringement of,or
13 induced infringement of any valid claim ofthe '689 patent.
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15 23. Plaintiff therefore seeks judicial declaration that it has not and does not
16 infringe any valid or enforceable claim of the '689 patent and that it is not otherwise
17 liable for infringement of any patent rights asserted by Defendant.
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19 24. On information and belief,the '689 Patent is invalid for failure to meet one
20 or more of the conditions or requirements for patentability specified in 35 U.S.C. §§
21 101, 102, 103, and/or 112.
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23 25. Plaintiff seeks a declaration that the claims ofthe '689 Patent are invalid
24 for failure to satisfy one or more of the conditions or requirements for patentability
25 specified in Title 35 U.S.C.,or the rules,regulations,and law related thereto,including,
26 without limitation, in 35 U.S.C. §§ 101, 102, 103, and/or 112.
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COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF


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1 26. On information and belief, absent a declaration ofinvalidity and/or non-


2 infringement of the '689 Patent, Defendant will continue to assert the '689 Patent
3 against Plaintiffs retailers in a way that will cause damage to Plaintiff.
4

5 PRAYER FOR RELIEF

6 WHEREFORE,Plaintiff prays for judgment as follows:


7 1. A declaration that Plaintiff has not infringed and is not infringing, either
8 directly or indirectly, any valid and enforceable claim ofthe'689 Patent,in violation of
9 35U.S.C. §271;
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11 2. A declaration that each ofthe claims of the '689 Patent is invalid;


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13 3. A declaration that each ofthe claims ofthe '689 Patent is unenforceable;


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15 4. A judgment that Defendant and each of her officers, directors, agents,


16 counsel,servants, employees,and all of persons in active concert or participation with
17 any of them, be restrained and enjoined from alleging, representing, or otherwise
18 stating that Plaintiff infringes any claims of the '689 Patent or from instituting or
19 initiating any action or proceeding alleging infringement of any claims of the '689
20 Patent against Plaintiffor any customers, manufacturers, users,importers,or sellers of
21 the Accused Product;
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23 5. Declaring Plaintiffas the prevailing party and this case as exceptional, and
24 awarding Plaintiff its reasonable attorneys' fees, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. § 285;
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26 6. That Defendant be ordered to pay all fees,expenses,and costs associated


27 with this action; and
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COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF
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1 7. Awarding such other and further reliefas this Court deemsjust and proper.
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3 Respectfully submitted,
Dated: July 1,2019 Mark D. BCremer
4
Zachary Page
5 Sherron Wiggins, members of
CONKLE,KREMER & ENGEL
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Professional Law Corporation
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9 By: y ^A .
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Zachary Page 0
Attorneys for American International
11 Industries

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COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF