Trade mark decision

BL Number
O/158/08
Decision date
9 June 2008
Appointed Person
Mr Geoffrey Hobbs QC
Mark
Geometric device HOKKO CHEMICAL INDUSTRY CO., LTD
Classes
01
Applicant for Revocation
Hokochemie GmbH
Registered Proprietor
Hokko Chemical Industry Co Ltd
Revocation
Request by applicant to cross-examine a declarant of the registered proprietor. Appeal to the Appointed Person.

Result

Request for cross-examination. Appeal allowed. Request granted.

Points Of Interest

  • 1. A useful summary of matters to be considered when dealing with a request for cross-examination.
  • 2. See also Hearing Officer’s decision dated 14 September 2007 (BL O/270/07).

Summary

In his decision dated 14 September 2007 (BL O/270/07) the Hearing Officer refused the applicant’s request to cross-examine a declarant of the registered proprietor.

On appeal the Appointed Person decided that the position of the parties needed to be clarified in a number of ways and he requested the filing of further witness statements from the registered proprietor to specify the particular goods being defended; the filing of unredacted copies of invoices filed by Mr McAllister and a witness statement from Mr Ogawa to explain his ability to write and understand English. The applicant was ordered to identify each document it alleged to be a fabrication and also whether or not it intended to apply for Mr McAllister’s witness statement to be struck out. The parties complied with these directions and the Appointed Person went on to consider the request for cross-examination of Mr Ogawa.

The Appointed Person observed that the question predicated by Rule 55(2) is not whether cross-examination should be allowed but whether it should be refused. In the present case the applicant had indicated at the outset that it was suspicious of the registered proprietor and it claims that the evidence provided as to use ismisleading and fabricated. By allowing cross-examination of Mr Ogawa the reliability of the whole of the proprietor’s evidence can be tested. There is of course the matter of costs in setting up a video link to cross-examine Mr Ogawa who is based in Japan but the Appointed Person indicated that this was a matter for the Registrar to consider at the conclusion of the proceedings. He ordered the parties to prepare separate itemised accounts in relation to the cross-examination request and participation, for the information of the Registrar, when dealing with the issue of costs.

Full decision O/158/08 PDF document59Kb