Vegas company ordered to stop using Cohiba name
LAS VEGAS (AP) - A federal court has ordered a Nevada businessman to stop using the "Cohiba" name on cigars and rum.
The brand owner, New York and Richmond (Va.)-based General Cigar Company, was awarded almost $770,000 in damages plus legal costs.
The businessman, Philip Restifo, says he will comply with U.S. District Judge Brian Sandoval's June 30th order, which banned importing, marketing, distributing and selling "Cohiba Caribbean's Finest" cigars and rum.
Restifo, owner of COHIBA Caribbean's Finest and Data Commodities of Las Vegas, didn't say how he would pay legal costs and damages.
Restifo is seeking bankruptcy protection.
Gerry Roerty is General Cigar's vice president and general counsel. He had called Restifo's businesses the most aggressive among several Cohiba counterfeiters in the nation.
Cohibas are among several brands of Cuban heritage premium cigars imported from Latin America because of the U.S. ban on trade with Cuba.
Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Friday, July 11, 2008