Russia has made the astonishing decision to sanction beloved cartoon character Peppa Pig.
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A court has ruled that trademarks for the world famous images can be flouted without punishment in Russia, in retaliation for British sanctions against Moscow.
Entertainment One – the company behind Peppa Pig – had claimed it was owed approximately 40,000 Russian rubles for breach of copyright, but this was rubbished by defiant Russian lawmakers.
The ruling by Judge Andrei Slavinsky in a provincial arbitration court in Kirov could pave the way for the mass abuse of Western trademarks and copyrights – allowing Russia to flout copyright laws by refusing infringement claims.
Judge Slavinsky said the ‘restrictive’ political and economic sanctions from the West over the military invasion of Ukraine allowed the court to refuse infringement claims brought by Entertainment One UK Ltd.
The use of patented inventions, industrial designs and utility models from ‘unfriendly countries’, namely the US and Britain due to the collapse in relations since Putin’s invasion, will still be permitted in Russia.
The British company can appeal the bizarre ruling against its claim for around £400 in compensation for unlawful copying of its images.
The ruling is seen as revenge for Western patent authorities severing their ties with Russia due to the Ukrainian crisis.