Jewelry and watches from Van Cleef & Arpels’ Alhambra, Vintage Alhambra and Byzantine Alhambra collections. A Florida jeweler was fined $150,000 for selling counterfeit versions of the Alhambra as well as fakes from other trademarked collections. (Photo courtesy of VanCleefArpels.com)

Miami—A Florida jeweler has been ordered to pay $150,000 to Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels after a judge sided with the Richemont-owned brands in a counterfeit case filed earlier this year.

On May 6, the brands filed a lawsuit against Scott King Inc. (d/b/a Florida Diamond Brokers and Kings Jewelers) accusing the store of selling counterfeit versions of rings, necklaces and earrings from trademarked collections.

A representative of the brands visited Kings Jewelers in Aventura, Florida in November 2018 and saw the look-alikes on display, according to court documents. (The retailer currently has two locations, the Aventura store and a store in Nashville, Tennessee.)

Employees allegedly told the representative the pieces were “inspired by” Cartier and Van Cleef, but not authentic. According to the lawsuit, the employee went on to say the jewelry was not featured in the store’s catalogues because they “don’t want to get in trouble.”

The jewelry sold in Kings mirrored pieces from Van Cleef & Arpels’ “Alhambra” and “Perlée” collections and Cartier’s “Love” and “Juste un Clou” collections.

20190515 Cartier comparison2A genuine Cartier Love bracelet (top) compared with an alleged fake (bottom) sold by King Jewelers. (Photo credit: Cartier.com (top), U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, bottom)
The pieces were engraved with the brands’ names and were being sold at prices similar to pieces manufactured by Cartier and Van Cleef, according to the suit.

The store stated it stopped selling and promoting the lookalikes as of May 8.

Scott King said in court documents that he received the counterfeit goods via “a purchase made at the JCK trade show from a vendor with an address in Asia.”

Reed Jewelry Group, the company that owns and runs the JCK shows, said in a statement to National Jeweler Wednesday: “At this time, we cannot comment on an ongoing court case to which we are not a party.”

On July 24, the court ordered King to hand over information sufficient to identify the vendor, including a last-known address, email, telephone number and website.

None of that information was publicly available as of press time.

The store sold 14 counterfeit products and had five left in its inventory, with sales totaling $38,190, as per court documents.

King was ordered to pay $150,000 and send the remaining inventory to the brands within 10 days.

The brands initially had sued for the profit made from these pieces as well as statutory damages of up to $2 million per counterfeit collection and per jewelry category.

|Subscribe >
National Jeweler

Fine Jewelry Industry News

Since 1906, National Jeweler has been the must-read news source for smart jewelry professionals--jewelry retailers, designers, buyers, manufacturers, and suppliers. From market analysis to emerging jewelry trends, we cover the important industry topics vital to the everyday success of jewelry professionals worldwide. National Jeweler delivers the most urgent jewelry news necessary for running your day-to-day jewelry business here, and via our daily e-newsletter, website and other specialty publications, such as "The State of the Majors." National Jeweler is published by Jewelers of America, the leading nonprofit jewelry association in the United States.