MONTREAL — In another chapter of one of the longest running piracy cases in industry history, the Superior Court of Quebec on Tuesday awarded Jules Jordan Video $2.3 million in damages in a case that has spanned almost 10 years.
Montreal Judge Louis Gouin upheld a U.S. ruling for Jordan in his copyright and trademark infringement case against Alain Elmaleh that was first investigated in the mid-2000s, when Jordan’s movies still were distributed by Evil Angel Video.
Jordan on Tuesday won a summary judgment against Kaytel Video Distribution and Leisure Time Video Canada for $2,373,568 (U.S.) in a case that first had a resolution in August 2007, when Jordan, along with John Stagliano and Evil Angel Productions, was awarded more than $17 million.
That amount that was later substantially reduced by U.S. District Judge S. James Otero. Evil Angel later settled with Elmaleh for an undisclosed sum, but Jordan continued to pursue his claim for the full amount.
Tuesday’s judgment came after Jordan and his legal team spent 10 days in a Montreal courtroom in late May, arguing against Elmaleh’s most recent appeal.
“I’m glad the Quebec courts acknowledged the U.S judgment,” Jordan told XBIZ. “This was the final hurdle on the road to collecting the judgment. It’s been over nine years, almost 10 years since the initial investigation.”
The Superior Court of Quebec said there was no reason to block execution of the 2011 judgment from the U.S. District Court in California requiring Elmaleh and his companies to pay the money to Jordan.
The case, however, may be entering another chapter. Elmaleh told XBIZ he plans another appeal.
"It was a big surprise to see the judge's decision against us because during the trial he clearly indicated that he was leaning in our favor, as he found immense irregularities in Jules Jordan's procedures against us in California," Elmaleh said.
"But despite the 10 days in court, with my attorneys demonstrating all the irregularities and procedural wrongdoings that happened in the California court, unfortunately the judge wrote a totally different decision, which does not seem to conform with our laws here in Quebec," he said.
"Therefore we are already getting prepared to file our application in the Quebec Court of Appeal, which in our opinion will have a totally different view of the case, as it shall strictly apply the fundamental principles of the Quebec law that require that I am given the chance to present a full and proper defense," he said.
"This shall probably take two or more years, but we are patient, especially knowing that in many similar cases the appellate courts reversed the first judge's decision," he said. "We are confident that in the end we shall prevail."
The start of the litigation dates back to when Jordan’s former distributor, Evil Angel, began receiving an unusually large number of DVDs returned for more than a dozen different titles, all of which turned out to be counterfeits of inferior quality. Upon investigating, those DVDs were linked to Elmaleh's companies.
Even though Jordan won his initial copyright infringement suit in California, Elmaleh in May claimed to be a Quebec resident who had no assets in California and done nothing unlawful in the U.S. Elmaleh’s defense also maintained that the state of California should not have had jurisdiction to try the original case.