From 7 States, 25 Members Of House Of Representatives Seek Reversal Of OFAC Decision Relating To Havana Club Trademark

From Representative Ros-Lehtinen:

Ros-Lehtinen, Wasserman Schultz Lead Bipartisan Call For Review of Havana Club Trademark License to Castro Regime-Owned Cubaexport

Mar 29, 2017

Ros-Lehtinen, Wasserman Schultz Lead Bipartisan Call For Review of Havana Club Trademark License to Castro Regime-Owned Cubaexport

(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) sent a bipartisan letter to Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson calling for a review and explanation of last year’s decision by the Office of Foreign Assets Control’s (OFAC) to grant a license for the Havana Club trademark to Castro-regime owned Cubaexport. Ros-Lehtinen and Wasserman Shultz were joined by nearly two dozen of their colleagues.

Statement by Ros-Lehtinen: “Last year’s decision by OFAC to grant a license to Cubaexport – a wholly-owned entity of the Cuban regime – for the trademark of Havana Club was an unprecedented decision with alarming implications for American intellectual property rights holders. It was a decision made for political expedience that ignored standing U.S. law and potentially opened a Pandora’s box that could see U.S. intellectual property rights holders subject to unlawful and unjust foreign confiscations. We are asking the new administration to review this license, reverse its decision and protect rightful intellectual property owners before any lasting damage is done.”

Statement by Wasserman Schultz: “As Members of Congress, we have a responsibility to uphold the values enshrined in our Constitution, including the protection against government confiscation of property without just compensation. It is with these values in mind that we strongly urge OFAC to revoke the license it issued to the Cuban government entity Cubaexport. By allowing the Cuban regime to register the Havana Club trademark, OFAC is out of step with longstanding United States policy, and has set a terrible precedent for American intellectual property rights holders.  I urge OFAC to reverse this misguided decision and send a loud and clear message to the international community that the United States has been and always will be a global leader on intellectual property rights.”

NOTE: To view the letter please click here. Other cosigners of the letter are: Ed Royce (R-CA), Eliot Engel (D-NY), Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Albio Sires (D-NJ), Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL), Lois Frankel (D-FL), Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), Frederica Wilson (D-FL), Ted Yoho (R-FL), Ted Deutch (D-FL), Darrell Issa (R-CA), Alcee Hastings (D-FL), Ron DeSantis (R-FL), Darren Soto (D-FL), Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Al Lawson (D-FL), Bill Posey (R-FL), Vern Buchanan (R-FL), Peter Roskam (R-IL), Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon (R-PR), Tom Rooney (R-FL), Dennis Ross (R-FL), and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN).


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