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HARLEY-DAVIDSON ANNOUNCES RECORD SEIZURE OF COUNTERFEIT LEATHER JACKETS

HARLEY-DAVIDSON ANNOUNCES RECORD SEIZURE OF COUNTERFEIT LEATHER JACKETS
 MILWAUKEE, Wis., Jan. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- In its largest-ever seizure of counterfeit merchandise from one supplier, Harley-Davidson's trademark enforcement department today took possession of approximately 2,400 unauthorized leather jackets bearing labels similar to those used on Harley-Davidson MotorClothes. An additional 500 jackets were seized from the same source on Dec. 30, 1991. The retail value of the jackets, which were delivered to Harley-Davidson's headquarters today, totals over $500,000.
 "Our trademarks are one of our most valuable assets and we cannot and do not tolerate their illegal use," said Clyde Fessler, vice president, merchandising, Harley-Davidson, Inc. Motorcycle Division. "Customer satisfaction is the cornerstone of our success," he said. "When people buy inferior quality counterfeit merchandise which they believe to be ours, our reputation in the marketplace is damaged." Harley-Davidson is intensely aggressive when it comes to "searching out, seizing and destroying" counterfeit products, he said.
 The course of events that led from discovery of the counterfeit goods to their arrival at Harley-Davidson is filled with deception, Fessler said, but not untypical in the world of counterfeiting. The jackets were originally discovered in November in California, he said. A civil court action was brought against the seller and the importer.
 When Harley-Davidson's private investigator served a restraining order on the wholesale importer of the counterfeit goods, he observed more than 2,500 jackets on the premises. The next day, a writ of seizure for the unauthorized goods and materials was issued. When Ontario, Calif., police, accompanied by Harley-Davidson's attorney and private investigator, served the seizure writ, it was learned that roughly 80 percent of the goods had been illegally shipped off the premises.
 Harley-Davidson then filled an emergency motion seeking a court order requiring the shipping company to turn over the goods to Harley Davidson. The goods were then transferred to Consolidated Freightways, which assisted Harley-Davidson in diverting the shipment to Milwaukee, Fessler said.
 "It's our hope that other companies considering infringements of our trademarks will get the message that Harley-Davidson takes a very negative view of counterfeiting and that we will do whatever is necessary to enforce our rights to the fullest extent of the law," Fessler said. "We will take swift action against anyone using our trademarks or trade dress illegally."
 Harley-Davidson, Inc. (NYSE: HDI), the only American motorcycle manufacturer, produces heavyweight motorcycles and a complete line of motorcycle parts and accessories. Its Holiday Rambler Corp. subsidiary is a leading manufacturer of premium recreational vehicles, specialized commercial vehicles and a diverse range of related products. Harley- Davidson, Inc. is also a manufacturing contractor for a variety of industries, including the U.S. Department of Defense.
 -0- 1/9/92
 /NOTE TO EDITORS: Photos available by calling contact./
 /CONTACT: Ken Schmidt of Harley-Davidson, 414-935-4538/
 (HDI) CO: Harley-Davidson, Inc. ST: Wisconsin IN: REA SU:


PS -- NY081 -- 8429 01/09/92 17:18 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 9, 1992
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