Superstar Katy Perry sued by Aussie designer Katie Perry
US singer Katy Perry is being sued by her Australian fashion designer namesake Katie Perry for breaching her trademark.
The Sydney fashion designer launched the legal action under her married name - Katie Taylor - in the Federal court yesterday to try and stop the Firework megastar from selling clothing branded with her name in Australia.
"This is a real David and Goliath fight," Ms Taylor said. "The singer has ignored my trademark and continued to sell infringing goods unlawfully in Australia.
"I am fighting not just for myself, but for all small businesses in this country who can be bullied by these overseas entities who have much more financial power than we do."
In 2009 lawyers for the singer, who had shot to fame with her hit single I Kissed A Girl, took legal action against the fashion designer when she applied to trademark her maiden name Katie Perry in Australia.
The Paddington-based clothing producer posted a video on YouTube asking the American singer to stop the legal action saying: "I'm absolutely no threat to you … at the moment the only people who are making any money from this are the lawyers."
The designer, who is now married and has two young children, said: "She withdrew the opposition two hours before the court case. I have the trademark in Australia."
But despite the legal ruling the singer, who is now engaged to actor Orlando Bloom, has launched a Katy Perry fashion label and sold branded clothes in stores across Australia, including Target and Myer. "I have been powerless to act," Ms Taylor said.
She started her own Katie Perry women's brand in 2006 and sells Australian made leisure wear that she designs in her Paddington workshop. "I am a small business owner and my brand is important," she said.
"People have sent me photographs of her stuff and I have never had the legal or financial firepower to do anything about it. They clearly think I am just a young fashion designer and won't be able to do anything about it," she said.
However last year she was introduced to trademark lawyers and obtained funding for a legal action through global litigation funder Litigation Capital Management.
"My friends have warned me against doing this," Ms Taylor said. "But I want to be an example to my children."
It is not the first time the singer has been in court this year. In July a jury in California ordered her to pay $US550,000 for copying Flame's 2008 song Joyful Noise in her song Dark Horse. She is also reportedly facing a $US150,000 suit against photo agency Backgrid over her alleged use of one of their images of her.
Her fashion label also ran into strife earlier this year when her shoe collection was pulled from shelves at US department store giants Walmart and Dillards amid a 'blackface' scandal.
Australian lawyers for singer Ms Perry, whose maiden name is Katheryn Hudson, have been contacted for comment.