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Lure maker accuses Bass Pro of copyright infringement

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Last edited 2:22 p.m., April 20, 2018

A Las Vegas lure manufacturer filed suit against Bass Pro Shops for alleged copyright infringement.

At issue is Bass Pro’s Slo Mo Swimmer Swimbait product. In its suit, Huddleston Deluxe Inc. alleges Bass Pro copied its “fish lure with vortex tail” patent, according to a news release.

“Bass Pro Shops once sold Huddleston swimbaits in their stores. It is unfortunate to see that they now appear to be infringing my patent and even copying the unique, detailed shape of our lures,” Huddleston Deluxe CEO Ken Huddleston said in the release, posted on Facebook earlier this week. “We attempted to address our concerns without litigation, but received no response. Unfortunately, that left us no option but to take legal action to enforce our rights.”

Bass Pro spokesman Jack Wlezien declined to comment, citing company policy on pending litigation.

Through the suit filed in California, Huddleston Deluxe seeks preliminary and permanent injunctions, damages and attorney’s fees. The suit claims the Bass Pro product infringes on Huddleston’s design, which he made from a hand-carved fish prototype, according to the release.

“Typically, we hear about large-scale patent litigation involving huge companies, but patent infringement can also involve a small inventor and craftsman who developed his livelihood around his invention and creativity,” said Huddleston’s attorney, Kimberly Donovan of GCA Law Partners LLP, in the release. “That is the case here. Ken Huddleston was an innovator in the swimbait field, developing lures that imitate the natural swimming motion and tail movements of bait fish.

“It is unfortunate to see a large company profiting off his invention and design through mass-produced knockoffs sold at very low prices, as alleged in this lawsuit.”

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