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Case 4:19-cv-02043 Document 1 Filed on 06/06/19 in TXSD Page 1 of 6

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT


FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS
HOUSTON DIVISION

JPT Group, LLC §


Plaintiff, §
§ CASE NO: 4:19-cv-2043
v. §
§
Sugartown Worldwide LLC § JURY DEMANDED
§
§
Defendant. §
§

PLAINTIFF JPT GROUP’S ORIGINAL COMPLAINT

JPT Group, LLC (“Plaintiff” or “JPT”), for its complaint of patent infringement against

defendant Sugartown Worldwide LLC (“Defendant” or “Sugartown”), alleges as follows:

NATURE OF THE ACTION

1. The Bernardo brand has inspired the women’s U.S. footwear market with its sophisticated

designs since 1946. Bernardo’s designs are the result of significant investments in design work,

product development and marketing. One such design is shown by Bernardo’s long-selling Mojo

sandals. The Mojo’s design is protected by U.S. Patent Nos. D581,149 and D577,182, issued to

Bernardo Footwear of Houston, Texas in 2008 (the “Mojo Patents”).

2. Sugartown designs and distributes apparel and accessories for women, children and men,

including footwear under the Lilly Pulitzer brand. Rather than undertaking its own independent

design and development, Sugartown misappropriated Bernardo’s patented Mojo designs and

commercialized infringing products throughout the United States, Texas and this District.
Case 4:19-cv-02043 Document 1 Filed on 06/06/19 in TXSD Page 2 of 6

THE PARTIES

3. JPT owns the Bernardo brand. JPT is a Delaware limited liability company having a

registered place of business in Texas at 5001 Spring Valley Road, Suite 600W in Dallas, Texas

75244.

4. On information and belief, Sugartown Worldwide LLC is a company organized and

existing in Delaware having a registered place of business in Texas at 1999 Bryan St., Ste. 900,

Dallas, Texas 75201. Sugartown regularly conducts and transacts business from established places

of business in the South District of Texas, itself and/or though one or more subsidiaries, affiliates,

business units and has committed acts of infringement, within the meaning of 28 U.S.C. § 1400(b).

JURISDICTION & VENUE

5. This action arises under the patent statutes of the United States, 35 U.S.C. § 271 et seq.

Accordingly, the Court has federal question jurisdiction over this matter under 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331

and 1338(a).

6. The court has personal jurisdiction over Sugartown because it has conducted and does

conduct business within the State of Texas through multiple sales channels located within the State

of Texas and this District. In particular, Sugartown represents on its website

(www.LillyPulitzer.com) that it has a store at 4035 Westheimer Road in Houston, Texas.

7. Upon information and belief, Sugartown has existing business relationships in this District

and has purposefully directed business activities to consumers in Texas and this District through

its website, department stores and one or more wholly owned retail stores.

8. Upon information and belief, Sugartown has committed and continues to commit acts of

infringement in violation of 35 U.S.C. § 271 and has and continues to purposefully place infringing

products into the stream of commerce. Upon information and belief, Sugartown, either directly or

through distributors, franchisees, agents and/or others, ship, distribute, offer for sale, sell and

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Case 4:19-cv-02043 Document 1 Filed on 06/06/19 in TXSD Page 3 of 6

market products in the United States, the State of Texas and this District. Upon information and

belief, Sugartown expects its actions to have consequences within this District and derives

substantial revenue from the sale of infringing products in interstate commerce and this District.

The acts by Sugartown have caused and continue to cause injury to JPT within this District.

9. Venue is properly within this District in accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 1391 (b) and (c) and

§ 1400 (b).

FACTS AND BACKGROUND

The Mojo Patents

10. On November 25, 2008, United States Patent No. D581,149 (the “‘D149 Patent”) entitled

Sandal was duly and legally issued to Bernardo Footwear, LLC of Houston, Texas. A copy of the

’D149 Patent is attached as Exhibit A and incorporated herein.

11. On September 23, 2008, United States Patent No. D577,182 (the “‘D182 Patent”) entitled

Sandal was duly and legally issued to Bernardo Footwear, LLC of Houston, Texas. A copy of the

’D182 Patent is attached as Exhibit B and incorporated herein.

12. These patents relate to the ornamental designs of a sandal claimed in the ‘D149 Patent and

‘D182 Patent, which are embodied by Bernardo’s commercially successful Mojo sandals as noted

above.

13. JPT owns all right, title and interest in and to the Mojo Patents by assignment from

Bernardo Footwear of Houston, Texas dated February 11, 2014.

14. JPT currently sells the Mojo sandal under the Bernardo brand.

Sugartown’s Infringement of the Mojo Patents

15. As the representative side-by-side comparisons shown below reveal, Sugartown

misappropriated JPT’s patented ornamental sandal designs in their studded thong sandal line of

sandals, including at least the Moira as depicted below (collectively, the “Accused Products”).

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Case 4:19-cv-02043 Document 1 Filed on 06/06/19 in TXSD Page 4 of 6

https://shop.nordstrom.com/s/lilly-pulitzer-moira-sandal-women/5…=g&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIzLz8scrk4QIVyLbACh1cRQIEEAQYASABEgJw4_D_BwE

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17. On information and belief, Sugartown displayed or caused to be displayed and continues

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to display the Accused Products in sales outlets and distribution channels throughout the U.S.,
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Texas and this District.

18. On further information and belief, Sugartown sold significant volumes of the Accused

Products through sales outlets and distribution channels throughout the U.S., Texas and this

District.
-2- CONFIDENTIAL
19. JPT’s Mojo sandals include a notice that they are covered by the Mojo Patents. On

information and belief, Sugartown had notice of the Mojo Patents through at least JPT’s statutory

product marking, JPT’s enforcement of the Mojo Patents, Sugartown’s product design process,

and/or any monitoring of third-party intellectual property rights by Sugartown in connection with

its release of new products.

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Case 4:19-cv-02043 Document 1 Filed on 06/06/19 in TXSD Page 5 of 6

PATENT INFRINGEMENT

20. JPT incorporates herein the allegations set forth in Paragraphs 1 through 19 above.

21. Under 35 U.S.C. §§ 271 et seq., Sugartown infringed the Mojo Patents by the sale, offer

for sale, and importation of the Accused Products or alternatively by contributing or inducing

others to sell, offer for sale, or import the Accused Products, literally and/or under the doctrine of

equivalents.

22. Upon information and belief, Sugartown applied the design of the Mojo Patents, or a

colorable imitation thereof, to the Accused Products for the purpose of sale, and/or selling or

exposing for sale the Accused Products.

23. On information and belief, Sugartown will continue to infringe the claims of the Mojo

Patents unless enjoined by this Court.

24. JPT has been damaged and will continue to be damaged by Sugartown’s infringing acts.

25. On information and belief, Sugartown was actually aware of the Mojo Patents and willfully

committed acts of infringement.

JURY DEMAND

26. JPT demands a trial by jury on all issues.

PRAYER FOR RELIEF

WHEREFORE, JPT prays the Court to:

(a) grant a permanent injunction against Sugartown’s continued infringement;

(b) award damages for Sugartown’s infringement of the Mojo Patents under 35
U.S.C. § 284 or § 289;

(c) in the event JPT elects to collect damages under 35 U.S.C. § 284, find that
Sugartown’s infringement has been willful and increase such damages to
three times the awarded amount;

(d) award prejudgment and post judgment interest;

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Case 4:19-cv-02043 Document 1 Filed on 06/06/19 in TXSD Page 6 of 6

(e) find that this case is an exceptional case under 35 U.S.C. § 285 and award
attorneys’ fees;

(f) award costs; and

(g) grant all other relief to which JPT is entitled.

Date: June 6, 2019

Respectfully submitted,

PORT & BUMGARNER LLP

/s/ J. Reid Bumgarner


J. Reid Bumgarner
State Bar No. 24053118
S.D. Tex. ID No. 631284
Port & Bumgarner LLP
6750 West Loop S., Suite 748
Houston, Texas 77401
Telephone: 713/678-0673
Email: RBumgarner@PortBumgarner.com

FOR JPT GROUP, LLC

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Exhibit!B!
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USO0D581149S

(12) United States Design Patent (10) Patent No.: US D581,149 S


Comeau (45) Date of Patent: *9: Nov. 25, 2008

(54) SANDAL D495,855 S * 9/2004 Comeau .................... .. D2/917


D496,147 S * 9/2004 Comeau D2/917
Inventor: Dennis FI Comeall’ Santa Fe’ D530,898 S * 10/2006 ....... .. 132/971
D534,713 S * 1/2007 WeitZman ....... .. D2/929
(73) Assignee: Bernardo Footwear, LLC, Houston, TX 13545939 S * 6/2007 wellzman et 31' ~ 132/971
(Us) D550,942 S * 9/2007 Chol .............. .. D2/969
D553,840 S * 10/2007 WeitZman ....... .. D2/971
(**) Tenn 14 Years D572,456 S * 7/2008 Guers-Neyr'ud ............ .. D2/971
* cited by examiner
(21) Appl' NO': 29/318’535 Primary ExamineriStella M Reid
22 F1- d: M 21 2008 Assistant ExamineriKeli L Acker
( ) 1e ay ’ (74) Attorney, Agent, or FirmiN. Elton Dry; J. M. (Mark)
Related US. Application Data Gllbreth
(63) Continuation of application No. 29/297,780, ?led on (57) CLAIM
Nov. 16, 2007.
The ornamental design for a sandal, as shoWn and described.
(51) LOC (8) Cl. .............. .. 02-04
(52) US. Cl. ....................................... .. D2/973; D2/917 DESCRIPTION
(58) Field of Classi?cation Search ................ .. D2/ 896, FIG. 1 is a perspective vieW of a sandal, embodying my new
D2/897, 9164919, 925, 9294934, 943, 9694972, design;
132/977: 978; 36/7~3*7~5’ 11-5’ 32298481956: FIG. 2 is a front elevation vieW thereof;
See application ?le for complete search history. FIG‘ 3 1S a rear elevanon VleW thereof;
FIG. 4 is a right side elevation vieW thereof;
(56) References Cited
FIG. 5 is a left side elevation vieW thereof;
U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS FIG. 6 is a top vieW thereof; and,
1,977,995 A * 10/1934 Morali ..................... .. 36/115 FIG. 7 is a bottom vieW thereof.
D129,706 S * 9/1941 Grossman .................. .. D2/932
D147,308 S * 8/1947 Steel ......................... .. D2/917 1 Claim, 3 Drawing Sheets
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U S. Patent Nov. 25, 2008 Sheet 1 of3 US D581,149 S


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US. Patent Nov. 25, 2008 Sheet 2 of3 US D581,149 S


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US. Patent Nov. 25, 2008 Sheet 3 of3 US D581,149 S

FIG. 7