A federal judge this week awarded BMW more than $206,000 and a permanent injunction against an Orange County businessman who sold consumers counterfeit products of the German car company.
U.S. District Court Judge Cormac J. Carney banned Irvine's Dennis Nguyen (a.k.a. Hoang Nguyen), the registered owner of Drift-Gear.com, from cheating BMW's registered trademarks in the future.
Given the reputation for selling quality, BMW officials are highly protective of their products, located Nguyen's operation and in January ordered a “BMW Blue Carbon Fiber Steering Wheel Emblem” for $8.99.
According to the Munich-based company's March lawsuit, an investigation of the product's authenticity proved it was fake.
Officials at BMW–or Bayerische Motoren Werke–initially demanded $2 million for each of Nguyen's related counterfeit products.
Court records show the company served the complaint on the defendant's stepfather, and Nguyen–who purchased his website from Go Daddy in 2006 and operated out of a house near the Irvine Spectrum–never defended himself in court.
Carney issued a default judgment for BMW.