Trade Mark Infringement by a Conisbrough Confectioner

October 1901

Mexborough and Swinton Times, October 11

Trade Mark Infringement by a Conisbrough Confectioner 

Albert Drabble, a confectioner, of Conisbrough, was summoned by Tom Holden for a breach of the Merchandise Marks Act.

The complainant solicitor stated that the defendant was charged with having, on the 14th September at Mexborough sold certain lozenges under a different trademark.

The prosecution was taken under subsection two of the Merchandise Marks Act. On the date in question the complainant, who was the advertising agent for Messrs Fryer and Co., manufacturing, confectioner’s, of Nelson, Lancashire, went into the Market Hall at Mexborough, where the defendant had a stall. Complainant saw a little girl go to the store and purchase some lozenges, which the complainant took out a certain tin (like the one produced), upon which were the two trademarks of the firm. The complainant himself then went to the stall and purchased a quarter of a pound of mint rock. He then purchased some of the lozenges. The trademarks were registered, and the property of Mr Smith, who traded as Fryer and Co.

The complainant asked the defendant if the lozenges were “Victories,” and the defendant replied that they were. Complainant then looked at one, and told the defendant they were not “victory” lozenges. Defendant replied again that they were, and so complainant said to him “look and see for yourself.” Defendant then examined one, and again said they were “Victory” lozenges.

The complainant then said he was the advertising agent for Messrs Fryer and Co., and told defendant he should report him. Defendant asked if he would give him the lozenges back if they returned him his money. Complainant said he could not see his way clear to look over it. The firm received many complaints from customers to the effect that they did not receive the “Victory” lozenges.

The solicitor read a letter received by the complainant from the defendant, dated 24 September in which he said it was an error on his part. He had put the chlorodyne lozenges in a “Victory” tin, thinking he was doing no harm. He had sold scores of their tins of lozenges, and he did not wish to infringe their trademark. The company did not wish to press the case unduly, they wanted the practice stopping. The present prosecution would perhaps deter others from committing the same offence.

Tom Holden, corroborated.

The Chairman said the Bench would take a very lenient view of the case, and only fined him 40 shillings, including costs.