WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Chocoladefabriken Lindt & Sprüngli AG v. Domain Administrator, Rich Premium Limited / WHOIStrustee.com Limited
Case No. D2015-0344
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Chocoladefabriken Lindt & Sprüngli AG of Kilchberg, Switzerland, represented by BrandIT Legal AB, Sweden.
The Respondent is Domain Administrator, Rich Premium Limited of Hong Kong, China / WHOIStrustee.com Limited of Wellington, New Zealand.
2. The Domain Names and Registrar
The disputed domain names <lindor.在线> and <lindt.在线> are registered with 1API GmbH (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on February 27, 2015. On February 27, 2015, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain names. On March 2, 2015, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response disclosing registrant and contact information for the disputed domain names which differed from the named Respondent and contact information in the Complaint. The Center sent an email communication to the Complainant on March 4, 2015 providing the registrant and contact information disclosed by the Registrar, and inviting the Complainant to submit an amendment to the Complaint. The Complainant filed an amendment to the Complaint on March 4, 2015.
The Center verified that the Complaint together with the amendment to the Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy” or “UDRP”), the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Rules”), and the WIPO Supplemental Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Supplemental Rules”).
In accordance with the Rules, paragraphs 2(a) and 4(a), the Center formally notified the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceeding commenced on March 13, 2015. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was April 2, 2015. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on April 7, 2015.
The Center appointed Douglas Clark as the sole panelist in this matter on April 15, 2015. The Panel finds that it was properly constituted. The Panel has submitted the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence, as required by the Center to ensure compliance with the Rules, paragraph 7.
4. Factual Background
The Complainant is an international manufacturer of premium chocolate. The Complainant is the registered proprietor of the trademarks LINDOR and LINDT in various countries in numerous classes, e.g. LINDOR registered in February 28, 1950 and LINDT registered in July 27, 2007.
The disputed domain names <lindor.在线> and <lindt.在线> were registered on 28 April, 2014. The websites to which the disputed domain names resolved to were at the time the Complaint was filed used to advertise and promote the sale of chocolates under the LINDOR and LINDT trademarks. The address of the Respondent was given as c/o a privacy service in New Zealand. Subsequently the address of the Respondent was identified as being in Hong Kong, China.
5. Parties’ Contentions
Identical or confusingly similar
The Complainant argues that the disputed domain names <lindor.在线> and <lindt.在线> are made entirely up of the registered trademarks LINDOR and LINDT to which generic Top-Level Domain (“gTLD”) “.在线” (meaning “online”) has been added. They are therefore confusingly similar to the Complainant’s registered trademarks LINDOR and LINDT.
No rights or legitimate interests
The Complainant submits that the Respondent has not been known by the disputed domain names and the Respondent has no connection with the Complainant or any of its affiliates and has never sought or obtained any trademark registrations for LINDOR and LINDT. The Complainant contends that the websites did not include a disclaimer explaining that they are not associated or endorsed by the Complainant.
Registered and used in bad faith
The Complainant submits that there is no doubt that before registration of the disputed domain names the Respondent knew of the Complainant’s rights in the LINDOR and LINDT trademarks and registered the domain names to attract business to its websites. As such, their registration and use are in bad faith.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
This is a very simple case of clear cybersquatting for the purposes of commercial gain which the UDRP was designed to stop.
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The disputed domain names <lindor.在线> and <lindt.在线> are made up of the registered trademarks LINDOR and LINDT and the gTLD “.在线”. The disputed domain names are other than the gTLD identical to the Complainant’s registered trademarks.
The first part of the paragraph 4(a) of the Policy is therefore satisfied.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Respondent has not responded to the Complaint to assert any rights or legitimate interests. Paragraph 2.1 of the WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel views on Selected UDRP Questions, Second Edition (“WIPO Overview 2.0”) provides:
“While the overall burden of proof rests with the complainant, panels have recognized that this could result in the often impossible task of proving a negative, requiring information that is often primarily within the knowledge of the respondent. Therefore a complainant is required to make out a prima facie case that the respondent lacks rights or legitimate interests. Once such prima facie case is made, the burden of production shifts to the respondent to come forward with appropriate allegations or evidence demonstrating rights or legitimate interests in the domain name. If the respondent fails to come forward with such appropriate allegations or evidence, a complainant is generally deemed to have satisfied paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the UDRP.”
The Complainant has made out a prima facie case that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain names. None of the circumstances in paragraph 4(c) of the Policy, which sets out how a respondent can prove its rights or legitimate interests, are present in this case.
The second part of the paragraph 4(a) of the Policy is therefore satisfied.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
For the same reasons as those above, the Panel has no hesitation in finding that the disputed domain names <lindor.在线> and <lindt.在线> were registered in bad faith and are being used in bad faith.
This case falls with paragraph 4(b)(iv) of the Policy which provides that a registrant has registered and is using a domain name in bad faith where:
“by using the domain name, you have intentionally attempted to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to your web site or other on-line location, by creating a likelihood of confusion with the complainant’s mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of your web site or location or of a product or service on your web site or location.”
The websites under the domain names were clearly being used to promote products.
The third part of the paragraph 4(a) of the Policy is therefore satisfied.
For the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the disputed domain names <lindor.在线> and <lindt.在线> be transferred to the Complainant.
Date: April 26, 2015