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Michael Jackson Estate Wins Preliminary Injunction

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By Kamika Dunlap on April 30, 2010 10:50 AM

Based on a preliminary injunction, the Michael Jackson estate has won an initial legal battle to stop to a group from using the name of Jackson's charitable group, one of his causes, or any of his likeness and trademarks. 

U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee granted a preliminary injunction ordering the current Heal the World Foundation to stop using trademarks that belong to the Jackson estate, the Associated Press reports.

The Jackson estate sued the foundations operated by Melissa Johnson in the California desert communities of Indio and Palm Desert that have been using the "Heal the World" name. The products on the foundation's web site use Michael Jackson related trademarks and are linked to the King of Pop's commercial success.

In general, an injunction is a temporary order made by a court at the request of one party that prevents the other party from pursuing a particular course of conduct until the conclusion of a trial on the merits of the suit.

According to the judge's written order, the websites convey false affiliations to consumers misleading them into believing they are contributing to either an official Michael Jackson charity, or to one of his causes.

Jackson created a charity based on his hit song "Heal the World" in 1992. It was later dissolved.

The judge also found that the entities violated "anti-cybersquatting" laws by attempting to register the "mjaid.com" and "mjquotes.com" domain names, which would also likely confuse consumers into believing the websites were associated with Michael Jackson.

Lastly, the judge concluded that an injunction is in the public interest, and that the Michael Jackson estate would otherwise lose substantial revenue and goodwill.