ABC News weighed in on the recent court ruling against the criminal Castro dictatorship in Cuba regarding an American company using the Cohiba Cigar brand in the United States. The Cuban government claimed the company infringed on their name brand, but the court ruled that they had no legal standing in the U.S. and the General Cigar Co. could continue using the name.
In their report, ABC managed to cover almost all the aspects of the case but omitted one very important detail: The fact that over the past five decades, practically every brand name the Cuban regime claims to own was stolen outright by Fidel Castro through illegal expropriations and confiscations. In other words, the complaint by the Castro regime is nothing more than a thief complaining about having their ill-gotten property stolen.
Are American Companies Stealing Cuban Brands?
Cuba has accused the U.S. of allowing American companies to “blatantly steal” some of the island’s most important brand names, following a court decision over the famous Cohiba cigar brand.
Cigars carrying the name of this well-known brand, which was created in Cuba in the 1960s, have been sold in the U.S. since 1981 by General Cigar Co., an American company based in Richmond, Virginia.
But General Cigar’s “Cohibas” are actually manufactured in the Dominican Republic and have no relation to the original Cuban-made Cohibas. The Cuban Cohibas are manufactured in Havana by Cuba Tabaco, a company owned by the Cuban government, but they cannot be sold in the United States because of the five-decades-old trade embargo against Cuba.
Last week, the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeals Board said it was ok for General Cigar to sell its Dominican-made Cohibas in the States, overruling a lawsuit that the Cuban government had previously won against General Cigar in U.S. courts.
The appeal board’s reasoning was that Cuba Tabaco has no legal status in the U.S., which means it can’t claim ownership over the Cohiba brand. And since the Cuban trade embargo prevents Cuba Tabaco from doing business in the U.S., this court decision is not likely to change in the coming years.
The state run Cuban website, Cuba Debate, published a scathing article against the court decision on Monday. It also claimed that U.S. courts had also used the embargo as a “pretext” to allow Bacardi to “steal” the Havana Club rum brand from the Cuban government.
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