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Case 2:15-cv-04772-GW-PJW Document 1 Filed 06/24/15 Page 1 of 10 Page ID #:1

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LightGabler LLP
By: Glenn J. Dickinson (SBN 159753)
gdickinson@lightgablerlaw.com
760 Paseo Camarillo, Suite 300
Camarillo, CA 93010
(805) 248-7208
(805) 248-7209 (fax)
Attorneys for Plaintiff
Los Toros Mexican Restaurant, Inc.

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

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CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA

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LOS TOROS MEXICAN


RESTAURANT, INC., a
California corporation,

Case No. 2:15-CV-4772

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COMPLAINT for:
Plaintiff,

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vs.

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LOS TOROS DE JALISCO


CORPORATION, a California
corporation, MIGUEL VALLE,
an individual, and DOES 1
through 10, inclusive.

1. Trademark Infringement, Lanham


Act section 32
2. Unfair Competition, Lanham Act
section 43
3. Unfair Competition, California
Business & Professions Code
section 17200 et seq.
Demand for Jury Trial

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Defendants.

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Plaintiff Los Toros Mexican Restaurant, Inc. (Los Toros) complains of

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Defendants Los Toros de Jalisco Corporation, Miguel Valle and Does 1-10,

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and alleges as follows:

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1.

This is an action for: trademark infringement under the section 32

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of the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. 1114(a); for unfair competition, passing off,

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false advertising and false designation of origin under section 43 of the

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Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. 1125(a); and for violation of related California state
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COMPLAINT

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law. These claims arise from the defendants infringement of the plaintiffs

registered trademarks, LOS TOROS MEXICAN RESTAURANT and LOS

TOROS and Design.


2.

Los Toros has repeatedly demanded that the defendants cease

and desist from their infringing and unlawful conduct, but the defendants

persist in this conduct.


Parties

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California corporation with its principal place of business in Chatsworth,


California.
4.

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Defendant Los Toros de Jalisco Corporation (Los Toros de

Jalisco), is a California corporation with a location in Concord, California.


5.

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Plaintiff Los Toros Mexican Restaurant, Inc. (Los Toros) is a

Defendant Miguel Valle is an individual who has represented

himself to the plaintiff as the owner or principal of Los Toros de Jalisco.


6.

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Defendants Doe 1 through 10 are persons responsible for Los

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Toros damages or otherwise answerable to Los Toros for its claims. Los

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Toros does not know the true identities, capacities and participation of these

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persons in the conduct alleged and therefore sues these persons by fictitious

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names.

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identities of the Doe cross-defendants when ascertained.


7.

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Los Toros will amend this cross-complaint to allege the true


The plaintiff is informed and believes that each of the defendants

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was acting as an agent, servant, employee, representative of or joint venturer

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with the other defendants, or was acting under the direction and control of

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these codefendants and within the course and scope of such agency,

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service, employment or joint venture. The plaintiff is informed and believes

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that, at all relevant times, the acts of the defendants, and each of them, were

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authorized and ratified by their co-defendants.

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COMPLAINT

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Jurisdiction and Venue

8.

The Court has subject matter jurisdiction of this action pursuant to

15 U.S.C. 1121 and 28 U.S.C. 1338(a) and (b). Personal jurisdiction in

the Central District of California is proper, because the defendants have

solicited and conducted business within the district, have advertised their

restaurant services in the district, have communicated false and misleading

statements to consumers in the district, and have created consumer

confusion in the district by infringing on Los Toros trademark rights, and

because defendant Los Toros de Jalisco maintains a registered agent for

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service of process in the district.


9.

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Venue is proper in this district pursuant to 28 U.S.C. sections

1391(b)(2) and 1391(d).


The Plaintiffs Business

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10.

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The plaintiff has owned and operated a restaurant under the

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name Los Toros Mexican Restaurant in Chatsworth, California since April

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1967. The restaurant is a popular venue for families and the community and

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is a frequent location for parties and social events. Los Toros is a family-

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owned and operated business. The company has long supported charitable

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organizations such as Kiwanis International. The restaurant fosters a friendly

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and wholesome atmosphere with slogans such as Tu Eres Los Toros (You

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Are Los Toros).


The Plaintiffs Trademarks

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word mark LOS TOROS MEXICAN RESTAURANT, for restaurant services.


12.

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Los Toros owns U.S. Trademark Registration No. 3397469 for the
Los Toros also owns Trademark Registration No. 3397468, for

the following design:

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COMPLAINT

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13.

Toros marks.

The foregoing trademarks are referred to collectively as the Los

The Wrongful Acts

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14.

The defendants began operating a restaurant with the name Los

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Toros. The use of this name has caused confusion among consumers, who

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believe the defendants restaurant services originate with or are sponsored or

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approved by or otherwise affiliated with Los Toros.

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15.

When the plaintiff became aware of the foregoing infringing

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activity, the plaintiff contacted the defendants and demanded that they cease

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and desist. After initially ignoring this demand, defendant Miguel Valle wrote

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to the plaintiff and stated that the name of the restaurant would be changed

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to Toros de Jalisco.

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16.

The defendants then changed the tombstone-style sign in the

parking lot in front of the restaurant to read Toros de Jalisco.

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17.

At some point thereafter, the defendants changed both the

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tombstone-style sign in the parking lot as well as the marquee sign at the

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entrance of their restaurant to again incorporate the words, Los Toros. The

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defendants changed the tombstone-style sign in the parking lot to read Los

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Toros Restaurant & Night Club. The defendants changed the marquee sign

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at the entrance of their restaurant to read Los Toros Restaurant.

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18.

The defendants did not advise Los Toros that they were making

this change. On information and belief, the defendants made the change
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COMPLAINT

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without advising Los Toros for the purposes of concealing their resumed

infringement from Los Toros, with the intention of deceiving Los Toros and

willfully and intentionally continuing to infringe on its trademark rights.


19.

The defendants are not operating a wholesome, family-friendly

business.

The plaintiff learned of this resumed infringement by coming

across a newspaper article reporting that three men were stabbed at the

defendants location during a late-night fight.

further damage because its wholesome and family-friendly restaurant is

being mistakenly associated with a sleazy and dangerous nightclub.

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The plaintiff thus is suffering

The defendants also have maintained an Internet and social-

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media presence using the name Los Toros.

This has led to further

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consumer confusion, when consumers seeking information and reviews

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regarding the plaintiffs restaurant have instead encountered information and

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reviews of the defendants business.


Evidence of Actual Consumer Confusion

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21.

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Los Toros has received multiple phone calls from individuals who

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mistakenly believe that Los Toros is associated with the defendants. Los

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Toros thus is being damaged through actual consumer confusion in the

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marketplace.

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FIRST CAUSE OF ACTION

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(Trademark Infringement, Lanham Act Section 32, 15 U.S.C. 1114)


22.

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Toros

incorporates

by

reference

the

allegations

of

paragraphs 1 through 21 of this Complaint.


23.

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Los

The defendants aforementioned acts constitute trademark

infringement in violation of section 32 the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. 1114.


24.

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Los Toros federal trademark registrations on the Principal

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Register are presumptive evidence of Los Toros exclusive right to use these

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marks, pursuant to the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. 1115. The registrations are
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COMPLAINT

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incontestable, which provides further evidence of their validity, and Los

Toros ownership of the marks and exclusive right to use the marks in

commerce in connection with the services specified in the certificates of

registration under 15 U.S.C. section 1115(b).


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The defendants wrongful use of the Los Toros marks has

actually caused and is likely to continue causing damage to Los Toros.


26.

As a proximate result of the defendants actions, Los Toros has

suffered and will continue to suffer great damage to its business, goodwill,

reputation, profits and the strength of its trademarks. The injury to Los Toros

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is and continues to be ongoing and irreparable.

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damages alone cannot fully compensate Los Toros for its injuries and Los

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Toros lacks an adequate remedy at law.


27.

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An award of monetary

The foregoing acts of infringement have been and continue to be

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deliberate, willful and wanton, making this an exceptional case within the

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meaning of 15 U.S.C. section 1117.


28.

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Los Toros is entitled to a permanent injunction against the

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defendant, as well as all other remedies available under the Lanham Act,

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including, but not limited to, compensatory damages; treble damages;

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disgorgement of profits; and costs and attorney's fees.

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SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION

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(Unfair Competition, False Designation of Origin, Passing Off and

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False Advertising, Lanham Act Section 43, 15 U.S.C. 1125)


29.

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Los

Toros

incorporates

by

reference

the

allegations

of

paragraphs 1 through 21 of this Complaint.


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The Los Toros marks are distinctive marks and have become

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associated with Los Toros and thus exclusively identify Los Toros business,

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products, and services.


31.

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The defendants wrongful use of the Los Toros Marks has caused
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COMPLAINT

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and is likely to continue causing confusion and mistake and to deceive as to

affiliation, connection, or association of the defendants with Los Toros, and

as to the origin, sponsorship, or approval of the defendants services by Los

Toros.
32.

The foregoing acts and conduct by the defendants constitute

false designation of origin, passing off and false advertising in connection

with services distributed in a manner affecting interstate commerce, in

violation of section 43(a) of the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. 1125(a).


33.

The defendants acts, as set forth above, have caused irreparable

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injury to Los Toros goodwill and reputation. The injury to Los Toros is and

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continues to be ongoing and irreparable. An award of monetary damages

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alone cannot fully compensate Los Toros for its injuries and Los Toros lacks

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an adequate remedy at law.


34.

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Los Toros is entitled to a permanent injunction against the

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defendants, as well as all other remedies available under the Lanham Act,

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including, but not limited to, compensatory damages, treble damages,

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disgorgement of profits, and costs and attorney's fees.

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THIRD CAUSE OF ACTION

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(Unfair Competition,

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California Business & Professions Code section 17200 et seq.)


35.

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Toros

incorporates

by

reference

the

allegations

of

paragraphs 1 through 21 of this Complaint.


36.

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Los

The foregoing actions of the defendants involve conduct that is

unlawful, fraudulent and unfair under California and federal law.


37.

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The defendants acts, as set forth above, have caused irreparable

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injury to Los Toros goodwill and reputation. The injury to Los Toros is and

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continues to be ongoing and irreparable. An award of monetary damages

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alone cannot fully compensate Los Toros for its injuries and Los Toros lacks
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COMPLAINT

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an adequate remedy at law.


38.

Los Toros is entitled to a permanent injunction against the

defendants, and to restitution of all amounts unlawfully obtained by the

defendants through the foregoing conduct.

Prayer

WHEREFORE, the plaintiff prays for relief as follows:

1.

That the defendants, their officers, agents, servants, employees,

and attorneys, and those persons in active concert or participation with them

who receive actual notice of the court's order by personal service or

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otherwise, be permanently enjoined from:


(a)

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using any of the Los Toros marks or any variation thereof in

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connection with the promotion, marketing, advertising, or sale of their

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restaurant services;
(b)

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using blurring, passing off or falsely designating the origin

of the Los Toros marks;

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(c)

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doing any other act or thing likely to induce the belief that

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the defendants businesses, services or products are in any way

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connected with, sponsored, affiliated, licensed, or endorsed by Los

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Toros;
(d)

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using any of the Los Toros marks for goods or services, or

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on the internet, or as domain names, email addresses, meta tags,

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invisible data, or otherwise engaging in acts or conduct that would

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cause confusion as to the source, sponsorship or affiliation of the

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defendants with Los Toros;

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2.

That the defendants, in accordance with 15 U.S.C. section

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1116(a), be directed to file with the Court and serve upon Los Toros, within

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30 days after service of the permanent injunction, a report in writing under

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oath, setting forth in detail the manner and form in which the defendants
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have complied with the permanent injunction;


3.

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of the defendants wrongful actions, in an amount not less than $250,000;


4.

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That Los Toros recover its actual damages sustained as a result


That Los Toros recover the defendants profits made as a result

of the defendants wrongful actions;


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That Los Toros recover three times the defendants profits made

as a result of the defendants wrongful actions or three times Los Toros

damages, whichever is greater;


6.

That this case be deemed an exceptional case under 15 U.S.C.

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sections 1117(a) and (b) and that the defendants be deemed liable for and

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ordered to reimburse Los Toros for its reasonable attorneys' fees;


7.

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That Los Toros be awarded exemplary damages for the

defendants willful and intentional acts;

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8.

That Los Toros recover its costs of court; and

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9.

That Los Toros recover such further relief to which it may be

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entitled.

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Dated: June 24, 2015

LightGabler LLP

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By:

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Glenn J. Dickinson
Attorneys for Plaintiff
Los Toros Mexican Restaurant, Inc.

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COMPLAINT

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Demand for Jury Trial

The plaintiff demands a jury trial of the triable issues in this action.

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Dated: June 24, 2015

LightGabler LLP

By:

Glenn J. Dickinson
Attorneys for Plaintiff
Los Toros Mexican Restaurant, Inc.

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COMPLAINT