£10,000 claim over dodgy rugby balls

A high street chain store sold counterfeit rugby balls bearing illegal 2015 World Cup logos.

Tuesday, 4th October 2016, 10:17 am
Updated Wednesday, 5th October 2016, 2:31 pm
Englands Danny Cipriani during the 2015 World Cup

The balls were sold to the Works group by a company based in Bath which had no licence to use the logos such as the English Rose and England Rugby 2015.

The supplier, Robert Frederick Ltd of North Parade, Bath, admitted four trading standards offences involving 2,000 balls in Blackpool.

Nichola Morgan, prosecuting for Blackpool Council Trading Standards department, said a public protection officer make a test purchase of one of the balls from the Works branch in the resort.

The balls were inspected by trademark experts from the England Rugby Union and the Rugby World Cup who said the balls were counterfeit.

Trading standards officers and a RFU trademark expert went to the Works headquarters in Sutton Coldfield and said the firm was selling the balls without the trademark holders authority.

Trading standards officers from Bath became involved and recalled all the balls and reimbursed shops involved.

Magistrates heard that Blackpool Council would be seeking a Proceeds of Crime order against Frederick’s involving more than £10,000.

The court sent the company for sentence at Preston Crown Court.

Defence lawyer Simon Gurney said: “This was an isolated incident not a deliberate attempt to defraud. As soon as the offence was pointed out they recalled all the stock.”