October 19, 2004
WWE files lawsuit against Jakks Pacific
By JON WALDMAN -- SLAM! Wrestling

World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. has filed a lawsuit against company's video game and toy producers.

On it's corporate website, WWE released a statement on the nature of the lawsuit, saying that the Fed, "filed a fourteen count complaint in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against Jakks Pacific, Inc. ('Jakks'), two foreign subsidiaries of Jakks, THQ, Inc. ('THQ'), a joint venture involving Jakks and THQ, Stanley Shenker & Associates, Inc. ('SSAI') and Bell Licensing, LLC."

The suit alleges that the companies violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO), anti-bribery provisions in the Robinson-Patman Act and other state-law claims.WWE is seeking treble, punitive and other damages, as well as a declaration of a void to the current video game and toy licensing. The current contracts expire in 2009.

?We very much regret having to take this action today, but regret even more the facts and circumstances which have compelled us to do so," said CEO Linda McMahon. "WWE?s intellectual property is a valuable asset of the Company, and we believe the actions taken today are necessary to preserve the integrity of our licensing process and essential to ensure that WWE receives appropriate and fair compensation for the grant of a license to use our intellectual property.?

Jakks has been making WWE toys and collectibles since 1995, while.THQ, who recently released the Gamecube title, "WWE Day of Reckoning" and is set to release "WWE: Smackdown vs. Raw" for Playstation 2 in late 2004, has been working with WWE since 1998.

Jon Waldman has been with SLAM! since 2000.


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