Lance Armstrong Sues Animal Charity
from correspondents in Washington | September 14, 2007
THE Lance Armstrong Foundation set up by the former Tour de France champion to battle cancer is suing an animal charity in the US over dog and cat collars which resemble its yellow wristbands.
Armstrong, a cancer survivor, launched the yellow bands during the 2004 Tour bearing the words "Livestrong".
They became an instant success, and selling at $US1 ($1.20) each, have turned into a huge money-spinner for his foundation.
They have also become a sign of recognition for those fighting against cancer.
Armstrong always wears his, as does cancer-sufferer White House spokesman Tony Snow, along with many other personalities.
In court documents filed in Texas on Tuesday, the foundation (LAF) alleges that the Oklahoma-based Animal Charity Collar Group stole the idea in producing yellow dog and cat collars embossed with the words "Barkstrong" and "Purrstrong".
The animal collars which went on sale in 2005 "use the same colour, the same or similar materials, similar wording ... and similar fonts", the documents allege.
"Such confusion, mistake and deception are likely to cause irreparable harm to LAF," they said.
The foundation has sold some 65 million yellow "Livestrong" wristbands since they were launched three years ago and is asking for the animal charity to pay damages from the profits of the collars and to stop selling them.