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Website enjoined for Las Vegas casino trademark infringement

Based on the filing of a trademark infringement lawsuit by a Las Vegas casino hotel, a federal judge has issued an injunction ordering a website operated by Marchex Sales Inc. to be shut down. The order was issued June 22 in federal district court in Las Vegas at the request of American Casino & Entertainment Properties LLC, the owner of the Stratosphere. Similar business litigation asserting trademark infringement claims were recently filed in Las Vegas by the gaming companies Las Vegas Sands Corp. and Shuffle Master Inc. The Las Vegas Sands lawsuit was reported in our May 4 blog post.

The lawsuit asserts that the Marchex website acceptance, which presents information concerning the Stratosphere, along with a number of other American Casino properties, is engaging in both trademark infringement and cybersquatting. American Casino owns a trademark on its "ace PLAY" loyalty club, which offer rewards to regular gamblers at its casinos. The website domain acceptance, the plaintiffs said, registered a domain name similar or identical to that trademark.

The injunctive order is only a temporary restraining order, which the defendant can contest in a subsequent court hearing. The order requires the registration of the website to be disabled or removed, with control of it placed in the hands of the court. The website enjoined is alleged to use the traffic generated through the use of the "ace PLAY" trademark and purported information about American Casino's properties to bring web users to the site where it offers hyperlinks to various online gambling casinos unconnected with American Casinos. The website operator wants visitors to click on those links, and they allegedly receive revenue for every person who does so.

Source: Las Vegas Sun, "Judge shuts down website in casino trademark lawsuit," Steve Green, June 22, 2012

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