Plumeria Dispute Continues; Po Sun Hon Co. and Allen Hon Attain Victory on Copyrights

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Po Sun Hon Co. and Allen Hon successfully defended against Cosmos' Jewelry Ltd's and Denny Wong's attempt to use the copyright laws to allegedly gain a monopoly over industry standard depictions of the popular Hawaiian Plumeria blossom in jewelry. As the case continues their next target is now to defeat Cosmos Jewelry Ltd. and Denny Wong's alleged attempts to use the trade dress laws to gain the very same monopoly.

The court recognized that the only similarities between my jewelry and Cosmos' and Denny Wong's jewelry are due entirely to the fact that we are both duplicating the natural Plumeria flower and using common, industry-standard finishes

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A federal court in Los Angeles has rejected the attempt by Cosmos Jewelry Ltd. and Denny Wong [case #CV-03-753-DT (Mcx) of the Central District Court of California, Cosmo Jewelry Limited of Hawaii vs. Po Sun Hon Company of California and Allen Hon] to use the copyright laws to gain a monopoly over jewelry depicting the popular Hawaiian Plumeria blossom using industry standard finishes.

The court recognized that the copyright laws grant everyone the right to reproduce works of nature, such as flowers, and to use polishing and finishing techniques that are standard in the jewelry industry. For this reason, the court rejected Cosmos' and Denny Wong's copyright claim and ruled that no jeweler could use the copyright laws to prevent others from making jewelry depicting the Plumeria flower using industry-standard finishes. Nevertheless, in an unprecedented ruling, the court relied upon "trade dress" laws to award this very same monopoly to Cosmos.

Allen Hon, one of the leading jewelers in California and Hawaii, and a defendant in the case, has asked the Los Angeles court to reconsider its trade dress ruling and will file an appeal if the court declines to do so. "The court recognized that the only similarities between my jewelry and Cosmos' and Denny Wong's jewelry are due entirely to the fact that we are both duplicating the natural Plumeria flower and using common, industry-standard finishes," Mr. Hon explained. "For this reason," Mr. Hon continued, "I believe I have a clear right to continue marketing my jewelry."

Mr. Hon hopes that his challenge to the court's ruling will vindicate not only his own rights, but the rights of all other jewelers as well. "No one should be permitted to monopolize the Plumeria flower," Mr. Hon declared. "What is next," he asked, "a jeweler with a monopoly on roses, hearts, or dolphins?"

Mr. Hon has retained the law firm of Knobbe, Martens, Olson & Bear to handle his appeal and his request that the trial court reconsider its ruling. Knobbe, Martens, Olson & Bear is the leading intellectual property law firm in the western United States and one of the leading intellectual property law firms in the world. Mr. Hon is confident that he will prevail on appeal and regain his right to market his jewelry and restore the right of all jewelers to market jewelry that accurately depicts the Plumeria flower. Mr. Hon encourages all jewelers to contact him or Knobbe, Martens, Olson & Bear if a competitor attempts to prevent them from marketing this type of jewelry.

Knobbe, Martens, Olson & Bear

Tel. 949-760-0404

http://www.kmob.com

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Hon Po Sun
Po Sun Hon Company
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