SW Legal studies in Business

Fraud to Obtain Domain Name Means sex.com Transfers Immediately to Rightful Owner
Description Court found that the holder of the domain name, sex.com, which generated substantial revenue, used fraud to obtain the name from Network Solutions. The court ordered the domain name to be returned immediately to its rightful owner and froze $25 million in assets of the defendant.
Topic Cyberlaw
Key Words Domain Name; Fraud; Asset Seizure
C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts Kremen moved for a preliminary injunction against Cohen to obtain the rights to the domain name sex.com. He contended that Cohen obtained the use of the name by fraud by forging a signature on a letter to Network Solutions to help him get the name that he used for a porn site on the web.
Decision Injunction granted because Kremen has established that he is likely to win the case on the merits and that he will suffer further harm if Cohen is allowed to retain use of the name. The domain name will be assigned to Kremen. Cohen will turn over $25 million for the court to hold pending final resolution of the case to make sure that he will not dispose of assets. Cohen will make a full accounting of all income earned and expenses incurred related to the sex.com domain site operation from the time of its inception. Sex and sex.com are generic terms that cannot be registered as trademarks, so defendants claim of trademark protection fails; the value is the domain name alone.
Citation Kremen v. Cohen, 2000 WL 1811403 and 2000 WL 1843239 (N.D. Calif., 2000)

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