No need to travel to Kunming, China to find a fake Apple store. According to a new trademark infringement lawsuit filed by Apple, you can find them right here in Queens. Documents unsealed at Reuters request in a Brooklyn court yesterday allege that two retailers based in Flushing’s Chinatown, Apple Story and Fun Zone, sell unauthorized iPads, iPhones, and iPod accessories. According to the documents, the items featured falsified logos and signature markings like “Designed by Apple in California. Assembled in China.”
Apple has already seized the unauthorized devices and is now demanding that the stores turn over the names of their customers and suppliers. Apple is also asking Apple Story to change its name because, well, duh. Before filing the suit Apple sent representatives to the defendants’ stores “multiple occasions over several weeks,” to purchase the knock-offs, which according to Reuters included a pair of iPod earbuds in packaging that was a “nearly an exact duplicate” of the real thing.
It’s possible that some of the undisclosed individuals and businesses that made, sold, or distributed the alleged knock-offs include folks higher-up on the suspected chain of counterfeiters. In which case, the crackdown would likely continue. Apple won the right to court order to access to defendants’ business email accounts, which could prove lucrative for the case.
What we really want to know is: do these counterfeits actually work? We have a feeling shelling out for a fake iPad is a mistake you only make once.