U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agents stationed at a port in Los Angeles seized 20,457 pairs of fake Christian Louboutin shoes shipped from China, U.S. officials said Thursday.
The counterfeit "red soled" shoes had a domestic value of over $50,000, but would have fetched over $18 million if they had reached the streets, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials.
In 2011, Christian Louboutin filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against designer Yves Saint Laurent, involving the red sole trademark.
However, in August 2011, U.S. District Court Judge Marrero in the Southern District of New York (Manhattan) denied the designer's Motion for a Preliminary Injunction.
The judge questioned the validity of the red sole trademark, writing, "Louboutin's claim would cast a red cloud over the whole industry, cramping what other designers do, while allowing Louboutin to paint with a full palette."
The District Court's denial of Louboutin's Preliminary Injunction application is currently pending on appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.