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City's Suit Vs. Online Auction Site For Amusement Taxes, Plus Criminal & Jurisdictional Issues in Trademark Suit

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By FindLaw Staff on September 29, 2010 6:03 PM

US v. Glosser, 08-4015, concerned a state's challenge to the district court's imposition of a 121-month sentence in a prosecution of defendant for possessing more than 500 grams of methamphetamine.  In vacating the sentence, the court remanded the case as the district court committed procedural error by announcing and promising that it would impose the mandatory minimum sentence during the change of plea hearing, before it knew the advisory guidelines range or had heard either party's argument regarding the sentence.

 

UBID, Inc. v. GoDaddy Group, Inc., 09-3927, concerned a challenge to the dismissal of the case for lack of jurisdiction on the ground that defendant, which is headquartered in Arizona, lacked sufficient contacts with Illinois to be sued there, in plaintiff's suit against GoDaddy Group, Inc., claiming that defendant violated the Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act by intentionally registering domain names that are confusingly similar to plaintiff's trademarks and domain names for the purpose of profiting from plaintiff's marks and exploiting web surfers' confusion by selling advertising for those confusingly similar websites.

In reversing the dismissal, the court remanded the matter in concluding that defendant purposefully availed itself of the Illinois market for its services through its deliberate and continuous exploitation of the market.  The court also held that plaintiff's claim bears a sufficient relationship to defendant's business activities in Illinois to expect defendant to defend itself in Illinois without violating the due process clause.  Lastly, the court held that there is no unfairness in requiring defendant to defend the lawsuit in the courts of the state where, through the very activity giving rise to the suit, it continues to gain so much.

City of Chicago v. StubHub!, Inc., 09-3432, involved an appeal arising from a district court's dismissal of Chicago's suit against the operator of an Internet auction site, StubHub!, seeking a judgment that defendant is responsible for the amusement tax for collecting commissions from both the seller and the buyer of resale tickets to events in Illinois.  The circuit court certifies the question to the Supreme Court of Illinois of whether municipalities may require electronic intermediaries to collect and remit amusement taxes on resold tickets, and on any of the sub-issues of whether: 1) the tax works as an occupation tax; 2) the history of the 2005 amendment prevents Chicago from defining Internet auction sits as resellers' agents; and 3) the amusement tax is one of "tangible personal property."

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