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Last Updated: Wednesday, 30 April, 2003, 14:09 GMT 15:09 UK
Arsenal resume trademark action
Matthew Reed
Matthew Reed has been a fan for over 40 years

Arsenal Football Club has renewed its court bid to stop a sportswear trader selling "unofficial" goods bearing its name and logos.

The Premiership champion's long-running legal row with trader Matthew Reed came to a head in December 2002 when a High Court judge defied the European Court of Justice (ECJ).

Mr Justice Laddie, who said he was "walking a judicial gang plank", refused to enforce the ECJ's ruling that Mr Reed was guilty of infringing Arsenal's rights in the trademarks of Arsenal, Gunners, the club crest and its cannon emblem.

The judge criticised the European court for making findings of fact instead of confining itself to the matters of law and said it had exceeded its jurisdiction.

He ruled there was no evidence that fans were misled into believing they were buying official Arsenal merchandise or that Mr Reed's goods were adversely affecting the club's own original products.

Highbury stall

But on Wednesday, Arsenal's lawyers argued in the Court of Appeal that judgments of the ECJ had to be implemented by the courts of member states and that Mr Justice Laddie had no right to question its reasoning.

They argued he should have sent the case back to the ECJ for further guidance.

Mr Reed, of Stanford-le-Hope, Essex, has been a fan of the north London side since the early 1960s and set up his wholesale and retail football merchandise company more than 30 years ago.

His outlets include a stall outside Arsenal's home ground Highbury.

The appeal hearing, before Lords Justices Aldous, Clarke and Parker, is set for two days.

Trader wins Arsenal court battle
12 Dec 02  |  England
Arsenal win court battle over logo
12 Nov 02  |  England
EU backs Arsenal in logo battle
13 Jun 02  |  Business

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