Border patrol seizes counterfeit Barbie dolls destined for Dollar Tree

The dolls infringe upon Mattel's copyright, federal authorities say.
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Classic and genuine Barbie dolls, unlike those the feds say were seized at the border.

Classic and genuine Barbie dolls, unlike those the feds say were seized at the border.

Federal authorities seized almost 22,000 dolls imported by the parent company of Dollar Tree that they say infringes the copyright of "Barbie" owners Mattel.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Minnesota is seeking the forfeiture of the 21,852 fashion dolls found in a shipping container on a Canadian National Railway train in Rainier, Minnesota in late September 2017.

It was imported by Greenbrier International, the parent company of Dollar Tree, and written on the manifest was "Other Toys."

"Representatives of Mattel reviewed photographs of the fashion dolls and confirmed that they were unauthorized copies that infringed the 'CEO Barbie' doll head copyright owned by Mattel, Inc," the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

"Specifically, Mattel identified several features of the copyrighted CEO Barbie head sculpt infringed by the fashion dolls, including the shape of the mouth, nose and jaw."

It was the second time in as many years that Dollar Tree's owner had imported dolls that federal authorities considered to be counterfeit.

In 2016, some 13,296 "mermaid fashion dolls" were seized by the border that also infringed Mattel's copyright.

In both instances, the dolls came from the same exporter and shipper in Hong Kong.

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