Fritz Clapp At It Again

October 29, 2013

All Posts, News

The Hells Angels’ gadfly lawyer Fritz Clapp has sued another couple of corporations for trademark infringement on behalf of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Corporation.

The corporations this time are 8732 Apparel, LLC and Dillard’s, Inc. They are both incorporated in Delaware. The suit was filed in Sacramento. Dillard’s is a national retail chain. 8732 Apparel is the clothing line of a rapper named Jeezy who was formerly known and yet may be known again as Young Jeezy.

8732 Apparel is selling a denim vest, the back of which is decorated with a red on white top rocker that reads “Street Bandits, a red on white bottom rocker that reads “Eight Seven” and a patch that very closely resembles the Hells Angels Death Head. The apparel company is also selling a couple of tee-shirts and a baseball cap that are decorated with logo that looks like the Angels’ Death Head. Clapp is also suing 20 John and Jane Does who “are persons and entities of unknown form who have commissioned, created, fabricated, displayed, distributed and/or sold the infringing items.”

The Suit

The suit alleges that the infringing items “bear a design confusingly similar to the HAMC Marks;” that the defendants “have obtained substantial profits from their infringement and exploitation of the HAMC Marks;” and that Jeezy and his co-conspirators have caused “Plaintiff HAMC irreparable harm for which money damages and other remedies are inadequate.”

The suit claims “Defendants’ conduct constitutes the use of words, symbols or devices tending falsely to describe the infringing items…. Defendants’ conduct is likely to cause confusion, mistake, or deception by or in the public as to the affiliation, connection, association, origin, sponsorship or approval of the infringing items to the detriment of Plaintiff HAMC;” that “Defendants’ activities have diluted or are likely to dilute the distinctive quality of the HAMC Marks;” and that “Defendants willfully intended to trade on Plaintiff HAMC’s reputation.”

Finally, the suit wants Jeezy and his people to stop it, pay Clapp’s fees, turn over any profits 8732 Apparel and Dillards have made selling the infringing items and “pay exemplary damages for fraud, malice and gross negligence.”

Don’t Even Say HA

The Angels have been particularly enthusiastic about protecting their brand. A recent notice circulating on Facebook has warned the world at large to never “post, or possess images of DeathHeads,” “use the words AFFA, HELLS ANGELS, HAMC or HA in any form” and “never use 81 by itself in any way.”

How enforceable all this huffing and puffing about the Angels’ marks is remains a mystery.

This is at least the third trademark infringement suit the HAMC has filed in the last year and a half. When the club sued Toys “R” Us and yo-yo maker Yomega those two companies countersued. Both suits were settled out of court. The club sued MTV star Rob Dyrdek, his cousin Chris “Drama” Pfaff and their corporations over the use of a logo nearly identical to the club’s in 2012 and that suit was also settled out of court. The terms of these settlements remain secret but Yomega continued to sell the yo-yos the club found offensive online after that settlement was reached.

 

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59 Responses to “Fritz Clapp At It Again”

  1. thatguysfs Says:

    I find it really crazy that while the MONGOLS MC is fighting the fed. gov. for their rights to their patch the HA are sueing people for using their patch. things that’s make me go hmmmmm.

  2. grasshole Says:

    I have lurked for a while, but never had anything intelligent to say. I still might not, but here goes. I am a former Marine and witnessed urban fucktards and the like wearing what I would refer to as my “colors”. Our digital cammies, boonies, even boots. A fat bitch named Missy Elliot was being interviewed on tv years back and was wearing every conceivable part of my uniform and was asked the following. “Oh I see you support our troops?” Her response “no I just like the look.” Sounds similar. I can empathize with those who will not be named because I bled for my colors. My brothers have bled and died for our “colors”. No they are not trademarked essentially, however it is a slap in the face for those who have earned them. Respects. Semper.

  3. ol'goat Says:

    Negros in fake HA cuts???? …hey, they never claimed to be geniouses,,, sounds about right.

  4. Rebel Says:

    Dear Phonebooth Bob,

    The number 81, used to refer to a person or group of persons is not trademarkable. “81” as a brand, used on shirts and hats and any other items listed on the trademark application, is. That was the issue with the skull logo on the yo-yos. The HAMC really never had any intention of selling yo-yos and the yo-yo company had already trademark a logo that was similar, though not identical, to the HA Death Head.

    Rebel

  5. Phonebooth Bob Says:

    I had also heard that the number 81 was trademarked. The way it was explained to me is that if the number is used as a number, example 9×9=81, or “the wall is 81 inches” then there is no trademark violation. If the number is used as a persona, then it is trademarked.

    I guess the context matters.

    Good for those guys for protecting their trademark(s).

  6. Ipsick Says:

    Man, the wanna-be’s seep into everything. Hell’s Anglers??????

    https://www.facebook.com/cronic.fishing?notif_t=friend_confirmed

  7. slycechyx Says:

    The HA has every right to sue, they own the copywrite on this & they have every legal right to protect it. This isn’t the first time they have had to sue, I’m sure it won’t be the last.

  8. Mike 184 Says:

    We were at the smokeout here in NC last year and a brother and I were looking over the parts one of the guys had setup. Fenders, tanks, bars, wheels, old pipes, HA Deathhead hat, carbs,cams…. Wait what the hell????? Hey dumbass what are you doing trying to sell these….

  9. Road Whore Says:

    @ YYZ Skinhead:

    I was at a swap meet in OC and some white trash tweaker baboon standing next to me was making a huge act of telling its boyfriend that it was buying a rebel flag to “scare the shit outa the nigguhs…”

    Your loud rejoinder should have been: “Damn, hell! I better get me one too then!”

    ROTFLMAO!

    Ride Free

  10. Trip Says:

    Fuck that motherfucker and anybody else who uses the trademark or anything close to it, they or he whatever comes first, deserve worse than a civil court action! Just saying…..for the Feds watching this page that was not a threat, but more of a personal opinion or observation and was not intended for or being represented by any views of any club! Fucking bunch of cock holsters!

    Repects,
    Trip

    FTF, FTP, FTW

  11. Jim666 Says:

    @ Raymond
    Maybe you misread my post I never said anything about any particular club other than most citizens will name the HAMC by name because they are the most renowned and it doesnt matter if they see the real deal of a HOG patch

  12. Dr. Sardonicus Says:

    @jj solari

    You sir, have me laughing my ass off. Thank you for that. Your words remind me of an M-134 Gatling-style machine gun firing 2000 rounds per minute. No one is safe.

    Respect and concur

  13. TigGirl Says:

    Well…the 81 comment has me confused. That’s not at all what several members have told me…in writing. I’ll cheerfully ask again.
    Thankfully, I have patient & kind friends.

    Respectfully,
    Tig

  14. Raymond Says:

    Jim666 this is not about any particular club. The powers that be have gotten together and have seen what is coming and are acting on it and see where it is going. You are going to see this shortly. If you wear a patch and it does not matter the color you need to get involved to save our life style. We are looking for people who can help. If all you want to do is talk shit then stay home. If you value your patch and life style talk to someone in your local coc, they will all have the info as fast as we can get it to them.

  15. jj solari Says:

    @dr sardonicus about negro lads taunting white lads to dare come into their neighborhoods “and see what happens”: “what happens” is you come down with cholera or malaria or aids or some other godamn weird fucking disease. who would go into their neighborhoods for any reason? “Come into mah naybuh-hood, crackuh!”……ummmm, no thanks, mr negro, my environment is squalid enough, i dont need to visit the fucking mother lode.

  16. Base Says:

    I get it, sue for the use of the emblem it’s likeness even use of the name in ad’s TV, movies.

    Putting a clamp on the use of a numeric or the words people speak?

    Seems a little far fetched.

    Don’t even grasp how that could be enforced.

  17. FF Says:

    This cringe worthy crap is… I can’t even describe it. I don’t think a Gunnery Sgt Hartmann asschewing could unfuck this abomination:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9RYRq7dcmc

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9RYRq7dcmc

    WHAT KIND OF POSER LAME-ASS METROSEXUAL FUCKING GARBAGE IS THIS?

  18. Jim666 Says:

    ocmouse22 Says:
    October 30th, 2013 at 3:02 pm
    This all may be for nothing if the black and white lose their current court case. None of us will have a patch to sue over.all of us need to get involved in saving our patches. After the feds are done with them all the other clubs will be next. Get involved in the save our patch campaign. Contact your coc reps and club members about this.

    I hate to say this but you may be rite .If they loose im sure your rite,
    and I agree all patch holders should get involved as one community.

  19. Jim666 Says:

    Rase ? money ?
    Actually I dont see it as either I see it as more of a protecting the patch no matter what patch or club It,s already bad enough most citizens cant tell the ditterence between a cmc and and mc or even a rc not to mention the clubs name rite on the top rocker if someone has on a hog patch and say they rob a bank or shoot sombody and its witnessed by a joe or jane citizen the first thing outta their mouths is usually the Hells Angels did it even if there is no 81 charter w/ in 4 hundred miles kinda like people just cant read, or mabey mainley when most average joes and or janes think about bikers in general they think of 81 rite off the top just like any and every other 1% / outlaw MC anyone holding a patch is constantly under the never ending watchful eye of the man so any patch is gonna lead the local pigs to head stright for the local Dom no matter who they are,
    Just like all the idiots that come on here saying I want to start my own club but the local Dom. or the COC wont let me / or they are trying to tell us what we can or cant do, There are very good reasons in place for start up clubs not to be very welcome and the main reasons were mentioned above, So Thats the reasons I see behind the lawsuits after all to whoever is in the other shoes it better than the other option,
    just maybe not as much fun.

    Im sure 81 will win in court if it goes that far however I doubt it will ever get to court.

    as far as the support gear goes if it,s not from the club supposedly it,s supporting then it,s not support gear the whole reason behind support gear is to support your favorite team and to have something to show your support
    If that team hasnt lic. the gear and it,s not the real deal then obviously someone else is getting your support and that person is making money off your clubs name so yes support gear is about money

    Just my .02

    Respects to most
    Jim

  20. ocmouse22 Says:

    This all may be for nothing if the black and white lose their current court case. None of us will have a patch to sue over.all of us need to get involved in saving our patches. After the feds are done with them all the other clubs will be next. Get involved in the save our patch campaign. Contact your coc reps and club members about this.

  21. rollinnorth Says:

    Hasn’t the corporation been zealously protecting its trademark(s) (No. 2,588,116, No. 3,311,54, No. 3,666,916) for over a decade? Let the race-baiters babble all they want; it’s just business.

    http://tess2.uspto.gov/bin/gate.exe?f=doc&state=4801:ww6t8v.2.5

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6PwtRCeL_a8

    Respect.

  22. Metal Dave Says:

    More like Young Jizzy amirite fellas? Ah nyuk nyuk nyuk

  23. Dr. Sardonicus Says:

    Not just Vagos – Pagan’s, Mongols, Bandidos, too

    http://www.ebay.com/sch/slamet1992/m.html?item=251336625530&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3a84d48d7a&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2562

    They’re out of Indonesia. Jesus. Pagan’s!!! I can’t believe it. I’m gonna puke.

  24. Dr. Sardonicus Says:

    @OC VAGO

    An associate found this on eBay and brought it to my attention a few minutes ago. Thought you would want to know:

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sets-California-9-pieces-/121170296692?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1c364fff74

  25. Road Whore Says:

    @ YYZ Skinhead: “vexillologists;” Damn…had to look that one up! :) (Like you in the forum…stay on!)

    Ride Free

  26. rollinnorth Says:

    Hasn’t the corporation been zealously protecting its registered trademark(s)(No. 3,666,916, No. 3,311,549, No. 2,588,116) for over a decade? Race-baiters can babble all they want, it’s just business.

    http://tess2.uspto.gov/bin/gate.exe?f=doc&state=4809:hua15j.2.5

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6PwtRCeL_a8

  27. OC VAGO Says:

    A couple years ago I encountered some nitwit sportin’ a full SOA cut at the races. I advised him he was not the cool kid at school and he was very possibly in eminent physical danger as some folks regard that sort of thing as as very disrespectful. He removed the garment.

    That was an easy schooling. Unfortunately there will be some that ain’t.

    All thanks to you Kurt Sutter.

  28. Dr. Sardonicus Says:

    Rebel:

    You’re probably right about the 2 opposing corporations settling. I think the flashpoint is going to be when an unsuspecting – or even suspecting consumer / owner of said jacket is confronted by a member / members (or as someone pointed out, an eager prospect)of the club whose name cannot be uttered. If that happens, the entire matter will transmogrify into a racial issue.

    I already see on various boards that I lurked around negro youth taunting “cracker” bikers etc. “Come into my ‘hood and see what happens” types of posts.

    Wait – sorry – actually that was Harvey Levin posting on “TMZ” –
    “Come into my neighborhood and you’ll get pelted with motzah balls you no-good biker gefiltefish hooligans!”

  29. FBomb Says:

    SingSing, it’ll probably be some stupid-ass white kid thinking he’s “dope cuz his homie Jeezy be sportin’ dat shit, dawg!” not knowing that wearing that will likely get his ass kicked…

  30. Breeze Says:

    I imagine that Dilliards had to be aware that this could happen. I remember when Vanilla Ice sampled the Queen song “under pressure” for his own song “ice ice baby” back in 90-91. His management and his label knew they would be having to pay up “IF” the song gained traction and became a hit. It’s the same ole “throwing something against the wall” as ever. They must have not done their due dilligence and had the legal department look into it. If they had,they would have known how aggressively this organization protects its trademarks. On the other hand, they will more than likely have to pay a settlement that will not equal the money they have already made off of this appearal,along with not manufacture any more and destroy the stock on hand. If a young urban youth and a hungry prospect get into it over the patch,it will end up on the 6 o’clock news as a racial incident and not as a property dispute. Jesse Jackson will be dispatched to Arizona to meet with a famous former office holder to try to extort money for his Rainbow Coalition in order to “heal the wounds of inequality” in the biker community. Zito and Jay-Z will be at the White House with The President having some kind of “Beer Summit” while the Feds are cooking up scenerios in order to sieze this trademark as well……

    Just My .02 which aint even worth that…

  31. YYZ Skinhead Says:

    Rebel Says:

    “I tend to think it is more about money than race.”

    THANK YOU. I wish Eminem had done this instead of some black pseudo-rapper. Then you wouldn’t have people calling for a Day of the Rope because of one intellectual-property thief. Ken Russell/his costume designer co-opted the Death Head for his “biker gang” in Tommy, and AFAIK the only back person involved in that movie was Tina Turner (ironic last name in this context).

    I don’t like Kanye West, but I like the idea of black people displaying the battle flag/second navy jack, thus pissing in the face of racist monkeys who abuse the flags. In the 70s and early 80s it generally wasn’t seen as offensive by most people of any color – The Dukes of Hazzard, Smokey and the Bandit, Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Allman Brothers Band, Tom Petty, Billy Idol: all of them used the battle flag and/or second navy jack and NONE of them were considered racist (again, as far as I know).

    I always think it’s funny when racists automatically assume that I should be offended by Southern flags. I was at a swap meet in OC and some white trash tweaker baboon standing next to me was making a huge act of telling its boyfriend that it was buying a rebel flag to “scare the shit outa the nigguhs”. When I didn’t acknowledge this, it shouted “Dey too stupid to know what it means. Dey CAN’T think.” It was hard not to burst out laughing. I guess hate group monkeys haven’t sufficiently evolved to know that vexillologists aren’t easily offended by a flag.

    YYZ Skinhead

  32. SingSing Says:

    Id even submit that sooner or later some thug rapper will will be sportin this with his homeboys and will end up in a situation with a hungry prospect then..u get the idea….oh, i can imagine the lawsuits comin tryin to blame the legitimate MC club for the asskickin that will arrive at the plaintiff’s door..

  33. jj solari Says:

    “you dont see too many moolies in civil court..” HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!

  34. Blackhorse Says:

    While we’re on the subject of image theft:
    http://www.today.com/entertainment/kanye-west-confederate-flag-my-flag-now-8C11493378

    With Respect,
    Blackhorse

  35. rookery Says:

    As someone with a long experience in protecting our 1% trademark and patch, I can tell you that if you don’t chase down every two bit motherfucker who tries to cash in on your history, blood of your brothers and reputation then you will be swamped with cheap crap bearing your logo being worn anywhere and everywhere. my Bro’s shut on average 30-40 fake ebay type pages/websites selling support or members stuff every week! its unreal how huge the wannabe market has become and yes SOA fans don’t fuckin help
    soloutions? well We don’t have a Rottweiler like Fritz Clap on a retainer so we hack the bastards websites if we can and place extra items likely to offend local sensibilities on the options list, anti islamic slogan T-shirts placed in webshops saw our problems in Indonesia with a couple of persistent offending companys vaporise. Much cheaper n So much more fun than paying out for lawyers too.
    As for trademarking a number well I was told some time back that the Indycar/Nascar number 81 is held in some form or other by the HAMC and owning that trademark/number does indeed give them some sway in the courts in cases involving bogus support 81 wear. I know nothing about autosport or how that works in practice but it’s a interesting angle if true.

  36. Rebel Says:

    Dear Dr. Sardonicus,

    I think it is kind of a no-brainer that the club which one dares not name will get speedy injunctive relief. The patch is an obvious knock-off and it is in direct competition with the Angels who also sell tee-shirts and hats. I have no idea how much money Jeezy and Dillard’s will wind up paying the club. I would guess that Dillard’s legal affairs told the retailer to drop the product as soon as the suit was filed.

    I tend to think it is more about money than race.

    Rebel

  37. Shovelhead Says:

    Let one of these pussy Rappers or some of their fans get Rat Packed for wearing this shit….they’ll learn!

  38. WARTHOG Says:

    My favorite player for the Chicago Blackhawks hockey team is Marian Hossa. His number is 81 and the ‘hawk’s colors are red and white. Oh, shit!

    L&R,

    warthog

    FTP FTF FTW

  39. YYZ Skinhead Says:

    Was it The Gap who used the Death Head on the boob of some shirt they were marketing at least ten years ago? 81 went after them as well. Of course the Death Head is a cool insignia, but don’t any of these knockoff artists know it is trademarked?

    FBomb, the first time I saw people wearing Black Label Society “soft colors” at an Alice in Chains gig, I thought BLS was a biker club before I got a better look at the “rockers”, which was precisely what the designer wanted.

    YYZ Skinhead

  40. Dr. Sardonicus Says:

    So let’s say Fritz wins by default – because you won’t see too many moolies in civil court – he gets a judgement – then what. Cease and desist along with damages awarded can’t stop some nigger from wearing this crude, aboriginal attempt at a patch as a show of defiance – hell, even more coons be wearin the briar rabbit patch to show solidarity, sho nuf. More white suburban males will shell out their daddy’s money to buy these than jigs who just steal the damn things.

    Still, in order for all the other trademark disputes that Fritz has been in to be valid, as well as future disputes he has no choice but to pursue these descendents of slaves. If he doesn’t then there would be precedent and estoppel issues down the road – a legal mind on this board could clarify that maybe. I do think it’s going to get interesting before it’s all over.

    @FF – brother this time it IS about race – (although Fritz would tell us otherwise) and if I read about just one incident where 1%ers finally kick the shit out of some urban youths, I will die a happy man.

  41. Diocletian Says:

    “urban youths” and wiggers are all about the tough guy biker look thanks to SOA and that other shit show.

  42. JohnQ Says:

    I totality agree when it comes to any clubs right to protect their name,logo and all club related materials, my club is still fighting for our patch, but how can anyone protect a number ? and every NFL team has a wide receiver wearing the number 81, are they subject to being sued ?

  43. FBomb Says:

    First off, respects to everyone deserving. There is no mistaking that Jeezy’s stuff is a complete rip-off of the clubs distinctive image, even down to the choice of colors. What kills me is that these assclowns (Jeezy, Zak Wilde and his “Black Label Society” shit, Kurt Sutter and his SOA shit, et al) market and sell this shit with NO CONCERN for the personal safety of the fucktard who doesn’t know any better and buys it, which is usually a dumbass kid (although I’ve seen quite a few middle-aged men wearing SOA shirts trying to act “badass” recently). All they care about is the money they’re making off of someone else’s lifestyle. I hope they lose a ton in court.

    My .02.

  44. 10Gauge Says:

    SingSing

    I hear you…but this problem has been going on since this club started to get notoriety 50 years ago..we just live in the age of the 24 hour news cycle so we here more about it. I have no affiliation to this club and do not speak for them….but regardless of the club, out here there are still plenty of soldiers taking corrective measures….trust me.

    “We can share the women, we can share the wine
    We can share what we got of yours
    Cause we done shared all of mine”
    10G

  45. Phuquehed Says:

    Fucking rappers, the most unimaginative fucktards walking the land. They *have* to steal from others because they’re too fucking stupid to do anything on their own.

  46. SingSing Says:

    Sad to say this recent hijacking of a WELL KNOWN and ACKNOWLEDGED piece of Americana is happening all too frequently. This is just symptomatic of a larger issue at hand…The thugs and other urban lowlifes and wannabes ARE going to wear this blatant theft of imagery and until somebody decides to take one ‘for the team’ and tear that patch off the asshats back ( which i am fully convinced is both a righteous action and a fully justifiable one ) this type of thing will continue to do so..This culture – the MC culture – is for all intents and purposes dead in the water. there is no more resemblance to the culture that existed in the 60’s and 70’s and for most of the 80’s. We can all come together in a campfire circle jerk and bemoan this alarming lack of respect n protocol but the fact still remains…we are livin in the age of S.O.A, Laffin Dildos and Jay Z…even the ‘urban’ MC scene is rife with posers to the ninth degree runnin roughshod over EVERYTHING. Honor, Respect and Protocol are now fading vestiges of a bygone era…I hope to hear the the dispatching of ‘corrective measures’ by the appropriate soldiers to rectify this disrespect is underway..

  47. jj solari Says:

    the facebook notice has to be a satire created by a comedian because so far on this planet only islam and scientology are fucked up enough to ever proclaim such a thing. you cant stop people from saying your name unless you wish to become a laughing stock, both in the courts and in the bathroom. which are almost synonymous, not to change the subject.

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