32Red Wins High Court Injunction
Two of the UK’s most prominent operators’ court case came to a grinding end yesterday when the judge ruled in favour of 32Red. The British High Court in London prohibited William Hill Online (WHO) from using the 32Vegas trademark in the European Union and must publish the court’s ruling on a number of its main websites including WHO-owned Affiliates United.
32Red internet casino won the trademark dispute last month after two years, a High Court judge imposed an injunction to 32Red prohibiting WHO from using the 32Vegas trademark – renamed 21Nova since August 2009 – any place within the EU. William Hill Online must publicize yesterday’s court ruling on its main websites including Affiliates United, which has 70,000 strong affiliate programs across all its brands.
The case continues today whereby 32Red’s legal team will seek reimbursement from Britain’s premier bookmaker, the legal costs might be astronomical. Its legal team will also try and ascertain the true extent of damages the contravention caused 32Red’s proceeds.
Today’s session kicked off in court 60 of the High Court in London where William Hill Online’s attorney requested the case be heard in private, since this might impact negatively if commercially sensitive information should be being publicized; the judge dismissed this request and decided the public has a right to know what’s going on. William Hill Online had no representatives in court.
32Red’s legal team informed the judge that the 32Vegas name and trademark was still used to drive traffic to the renamed 21Nova site. He also argued that the use of adwords on Google in tandem with large amounts of third party affiliate websites, were driving players to 21Nova’s site at the cost of the 32Red trademark. He also said that a number of 32Vegas e-mail addresses were “being used” and 32Vegas’ name should be stopped immediately.
“As of late 32Vegas stopped using the 32Vegas name on William Hill Online’s premier website but carried on using secondary sites and that is why an investigation should be started to launch an injunction”, he added.
William Hill Online’s legal eagle hit back by suggesting that 32Vegas had clearly rebranded to 21Nova and that WHO was not in a position to prevent third parties and affiliates from advertising the 32Vegas name. Irrespective of owning and managing the 70,000 strong members Affiliates United, attorneys claimed it’s impossible for William Hill to police every affiliate and stop them from promoting 32Vegas.The judge granted 32Red an injunction.[addtoany]