Wu-Tang Clan's RZA has filed a $2million lawsuit against multiple e-commerce stores believed to be selling fake band merchandise.
The rapper is seeking all profits from the bootleg sales of items sporting the collective's iconic logo. Alternatively, he has asked for $2million for "each and every" use of the trademarks.
The businesses involved have been accused of counterfeiting, false designation of origin, and trademark infringement. In addition, major online marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, and AliExpress have been asked to stop promoting the bootleg stores through their platforms.
According to the documents filed, and obtained by US magazine Complex: “Many defendants also deceive unknowing consumers by using the Wu-Tang Clan trademarks without authorization [sic] within the content, text, and/or meta tags of their e-commerce stores to attract various search engines crawling the Internet looking for e-commerce stores relevant to consumer searches for Wu-Tang Clan products.
"Other e-commerce stores operating under the Seller Aliases omit using the Wu-Tang Clan trademarks in the item title to evade enforcement efforts while using strategic item titles and descriptions that will trigger their listings when consumers are searching for Wu-Tang Clan products," the statement continued.
Last year, RZA announced plans for a new comic book centred on his alter-ego, Bobby Digital. More recently, the US government shared new images of the ultra-rare one-off 'Once Upon A Time In Shaolin' Wu-Tang Clan album, which authorities ceased and sold to the crypto group PleasrDAO for $4million. Funds went towards reducing the $7.4million debt of its previous owner, so-called "Pharma-bro" Martin Shkreli, which was accrued after he was sentenced on securities and fraud charges.