Home Awareness The European Union does not want a Pablo Escobar brand

The European Union does not want a Pablo Escobar brand

“Pablo Escobar” cannot be a registered trademark in the European Union, the court ruled on Wednesday, rejecting a Puerto Rican company which wanted to use the name of the famous Colombian drug trafficker who died in 1993 to sell various products and services in the EU.

The EU General Court ruled in favor of the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) which had refused the registration of this trademark deemed “contrary to public order and good morals”.

The Escobar company, established in the American territory of Puerto Rico and which wished to use the “Pablo Escobar” brand in the EU, then challenged the EUIPO decision in court. The court, established in Luxembourg, explained in substance that this European agency had correctly justified its refusal, based in particular on the negative perception of the name Escobar by the Spanish public, those who in Europe are most likely to know him.

Pablo Escobar, founder and boss of the Medellin cartel, killed by police in 1993 in this Colombian city, is “publicly perceived, in Spain, as a symbol of organized crime, responsible for numerous crimes,” noted the court. Thus the EUIPO was right to consider that the Spanish, and by extension all European consumers, risked associating its name more with these “crimes and suffering” resulting from drug trafficking “rather than with its possible good actions in favor of of the poor in Colombia”, as the promoters of the brand defended.

Presumption of innocence

The request for registration of the Pablo Escobar “verbal sign” by the company Escobar Inc. dates back to 2021. The company had challenged the EUIPO’s refusal, seeing it as a violation of the Colombian drug trafficker’s right to the presumption of innocence ( never convicted in criminal proceedings). The EU court did not specify on Wednesday what the “wide range of products and services” offered by this company included.

This article is originally published on lematin.ch

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