Shein hit with lawsuit by "surprised" and "outraged" designers

Shein hit with lawsuit by "surprised" and "outraged" designers
Why Shein Was Cancelled On Social Media

Fast fashion retailer Shein has been hit with a lawsuit alleging the company has engaged in “systematic intellectual property infringement” and “egregious” copyright infringement, which constitutes racketeering.

The complaint was filed on Tuesday (12 July) in the US District Court for the Central District of California, on behalf of three independent designers - Krista Perry, Larissa Martinez, and Jay Baron - who claimed that their products were copied and sold by Shein.

The lawsuit alleges that the reproduced product were “truly exact copies of copyrightable graphic design” and not “close call” copies, where designs can be interpreted with certain liberties.

In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs assert that Shein has become the retailer giant it is “through high technology, not high design.”

The lawsuits’ claim amounts to Shein violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organisations Act, or RICO, the claim alleges.

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The RICO Act of 1970 was designed as a way to combat the exploitation of legal business by organised crime. As well as to prosecute white-collar crimes. The Act has a civil section that can be used for consumer protection or to protect against commercial fraud.

“Shein has grown rich by committing individual infringements over and over again, as part of a long and continuous pattern of racketeering, which shows no sign of abating,” the suit alleges.

Perry, one of the designers suing Shein, said that after discovering a copy of a graphic poster on Shein, they complained via contact forms. They described the copy as “incredibly disheartening, insulting and downright evil to profit off of artists without their knowledge or permission.”

Shein wrote back offering $500. “Shein made its offer as if it were a mom-and-pop operation rather than one of the richest enterprises in the world,” claims the suit.

Indy100 has reached out to Shein for comment.

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