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Skechers sued by group of models

August 17, 2011 |  5:12 pm

Skechers

Skechers USA has been sued by a group of models who are accusing the footwear brand of using their images without permission or payment.

The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, says that Skechers knowingly failed to pay for, and did not have the right to use, numerous images of its footwear being modeled in countless advertisements distributed globally. 

"Skechers paid a small sum of money for only limited use of these images, for a limited amount of time," said David Shraga, a lawyer from Los Angeles firm Kawahito Shraga & Westrick, who is representing the models. "Then it disregarded these limitations and embarked on a successful worldwide branding campaign that was built around the images of these young models." 

The lawsuit alleges that Manhattan Beach-based Skechers took advantage of young, up-and-coming models who would find it difficult to discover the wrongdoing, especially because it occurred in foreign countries. 

The models are seeking compensatory and punitive damages. "The models are seeking no less than $10 million in compensation for Skechers' misappropriation of their likenesses," said a news release from Kawahito Shraga & Westrick. 

A Skechers spokeswoman said the company does not comment on litigation.

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-- Andrea Chang

Photo: A Skechers store in Manhattan Beach. Credit: Jay Clendenin / Los Angeles Times

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