IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE THIRTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, FLORIDA
CIRCUIT CIVIL DIVISION
SOUTH TAMPA PAINTBALL, LLC
Plaintiff, Case No.: 2019-CA-003105
SOUTH TAMPA’S PAINTBALL COMPANY, LLC Division: L
and RICHARD LEROY CANIDA D/B/A
CITY COW CONSULTING
COMES NOW, the Plaintiff, South Tampa Paintball, LLC, by and through undersigned counsel, and sues the Defendants South Tampa’s Paintball Company, LLC and Richard Leroy Canida, and alleges:
1. That this is an action to enjoin infringement of a registered trademark pursuant to Section 495.141 of the Florida Statutes, for an accounting of profits made by defendant, and for damages that exceed Fifteen Thousand ($15,000.00) Dollars and otherwise within the subject matter jurisdiction of the Circuit Court.
2. At all times material hereto, Plaintiff, South Tampa Paintball, LLC was a Florida Limited Liability Company with its principal place of business at 304 S. Plant Avenue, Tampa, Hillsborough County Florida.
3. At all times material hereto, Defendant, South Tampa’s Paintball Company, LLC has been a Florida Limited Liability Company with its principal place of business at 3318 S. 50th Street, Tampa, Hillsborough County Florida, for which venue is proper.
4. At all times material hereto, Richard Leroy Canida is a resident of Hillsborough County for which venue is proper.
5. Richard Leroy Canida is the manager, owner and operator of South Tampa’s Paintball Company, LLC, See Exhibit “A” attached hereto.
6. Since July 22, 2013, Plaintiff South Tampa Paintball, LLC has been engaged in the business of servicing, hosting, and marketing paintball under the service mark “STP” to various customers in and around the central Florida market. From the time the service mark was granted to the present time, Plaintiff has actively and thoroughly advertised its products and services under this trademark throughout the State of Florida.
7. On December 8, 2015 the United States Patent and Trademark office issued the registered service mark “STP” artwork to Plaintiff South Tampa Paintball, LLC, registration number 4866038. The certificate of registration is attached hereto as Exhibit “B.”
8. As a result of Plaintiff’s extensive experience, care and skill in hosting and marketing paintball, it has become widely known and has acquired a reputation of excellence. It has commanded, and still commands, extensive goodwill and value to the Plaintiff.
9. Plaintiff owns the domain SouthTampaPaintball.com, and has spent considerable time money and effort to generate goodwill through its domain.
10. The Defendants have copied and registered the domain name SouthTampaPaintballs.com with the sole intent to deceive the public.
11. Plaintiff has invested considerable time in marketing its service mark on social media like Facebook and Google.
12. Defendants have created social media sites and pages designed to deceive the public into thinking that South Tampa’s Paintball Company, LLC is South Tampa Paintball, LLC.
13. On July 18, 2018, notwithstanding the long use by Plaintiff of its registered service mark, Defendant South Tampa’s Paintball Company, LLC, without Plaintiff’s consent, began to sell, and offer for sale, and now continues to offer for sale in Florida services substantially similar to Plaintiff’s services, and marketed with substantially similar logos as Plaintiff’s registered service mark Exhibit “C.” Defendant has infringed and still is infringing on Plaintiff’s registered service mark.
14. These acts by Defendants are intended to deceive the public, and are done with the fraudulent purpose on Defendant’s part to palm off and substitute services not of Plaintiff’s quality, and the Defendants are fraudulently diverting profits arising from Plaintiff’s goodwill and its extensive advertising of its trademark, which the public has come to associate exclusively with the services sold by Plaintiff.
15. Defendant’s use of the imitation of Plaintiff’s service mark has caused and is likely to cause confusion or mistake or to deceive consumers as to the source or origin of Plaintiff’s services, or Defendant’s imitation of Plaintiff’s trademark is calculated to deceive the purchasers and consumers of Plaintiff’s good will and services. Defendant has misled many consumers to purchase products and services sold by defendant in the belief that it is offered by Plaintiff, to the diminution of the business and good will of Plaintiff.
16. Defendant’s continuing infringement of Plaintiff’s service mark is causing irreparable damage to Plaintiff’s trade, business, reputation and goodwill. Such infringement will continue to cause the irreparable injury unless Defendant is restrained by this Court. See Exhibit “D.”
17. As a result of Defendant’s infringement of plaintiff’s trademark, plaintiff has been damaged in the amount of profits realized by Defendant from the sales of products and services similar to Plaintiff’s and bearing plaintiff’s service mark or an imitation thereof.
Wherefore, Plaintiff South Tampa Paintball, LLC, requests that:
a) The court enjoin Defendant South Tampa’s Paintball Company, LLC, Rick Canida and defendant’s employees, officers, directors, managers, agents and everyone in privity therewith, from selling or offering for sale in Florida any services similar to Plaintiff’s services bearing the service mark “STP” or any imitation of the Plaintiff’s service mark;
b) In accordance with Section 495.141 of the Florida Statutes, Defendant to account for and pay over to Plaintiff all gains, profits and advantages realized by Defendant on sales of products and services similar to Plaintiff’s sold under Plaintiff’s trademark or any imitation of Plaintiff’s service mark;
c) In accordance with Section 495.141 of the Florida Statutes, defendant pay over to plaintiff three times the actual damages and profits earned by Defendants;
d) Defendant be required to deliver to Plaintiff all counterfeits or imitation of Plaintiff’s service mark in Defendant’s possession or under its control;
e) Order that Defendants release and assign the domain names similar to Plaintiff’s;
f) Direct that Defendants to transfer to Plaintiff all social media accounts including Facebook, Google, Instagram and any other social media platform that violates Plaintiff’s service mark;
g) Ordering that Defendants be required to immediately provide to all of their advertisers, distributors, suppliers, social media providers and all others with whom they do business a copy of the Court’s injunction order, and otherwise inform them in writing that they must immediately cease, upon pain of contempt of court the sale, distribution marketing and advertising of any products or services using Plaintiff’s trademark or any confusingly similar service mark;
h) Award attorney fees to the prevailing party pursuant to Florida Statute 495.141(1);
i) Award Plaintiff costs of suit; and
j) Plaintiff be granted such other and further relief as the court may deem proper.
Plaintiff further demands a trial by jury of all issues so triable.
I HEREBY CERTIFY that a true and correct copy of the foregoing has been sent via certified process server along with the Summons in this cause.
Matthew D. Powell, Esq. FBN 710148
Service E-mail: Pleadings@MattLaw.com
Attorney for South Tampa Paintball, LLC
304 S. Plant Avenue
Tampa, Florida 33606