Family Fighting: Upper Deck International Sues Upper Deck of California

The counterfeit Yu-Gi-Oh! cards allegedly produced by Upper Deck continue to haunt the compnay. This week, another legal battl has surfaced, as Upper Deck International, based out of the Netherlands, has sued its California subsidiary over the cards.

According to the suit, Upper Deck International claims the counterfiet cards cost the company millions in lost sales, legal fees and a resulting loss of reputation.

According to the Courthouse News Service, in its federal complaint, Upper Deck International (UDI) claims that in September 2006 it signed an agreement with Konami Digital Entertainment, manufacturer of the Yu-Gi-Oh! trading card game, to serve as exclusive distributor of the game throughout Europe and South Africa. At about the same time, the Upper Deck Co., (UDC) based in Carlsbad, calif., signed a similar agreement to serve as exclusive distributor of the game in the United States, Canada, Guam, and Central and South America, according to the complaint.

UDI claims, "In or about the first half of 2008, defendants orchestrated a scheme to produce and distribute counterfeit Yu-Gi-Oh! trading cards that UDC was not authorized to produce or distribute under the Yu-Gi-Oh! America contract."

The resulting counterfeit cards led to the termination of the contracts with Komani for Upper Deck of California and UDI, along with many legal fees as Upper Deck initially claimed they did not produce the card and later admitted a role in actually doing so.

According to court records, UDI said Upper Deck asked for a $1 million laon to settle the Konami lawsuit in the U.S., but it did not resolve the legal battle in Europe, which left UDI in line for more aggressive lawsuits from Konami (Seeking $64 million) in that arena. Apparently, UDI thought the $1 million loan to Upper Deck would resolve the matter worldwide, which it did not.

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