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MGA awarded $310m in dispute with Mattel

Bloomberg News / August 6, 2011

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LOS ANGELES - MGA Entertainment Inc., the maker of Bratz dolls, won $225 million in punitive damages, attorney fees, and costs from Mattel Inc., bringing the total award in the trial over the doll’s origins to $310 million.

US District Judge David Carter in Santa Ana, Calif., awarded MGA $85 million in punitive damages and $2.5 million in fees and costs for its trade-secret theft claims against Mattel on Thursday. The judge separately awarded MGA about $137 million in fees and costs for having to defend against Mattel’s copyright infringement claims.

“Mattel asserted a copyright claim that was stunning in scope and unreasonable in relief it requested,’’ Carter said. “The claim imperiled . . . the only serious competitor Mattel had faced in the fashion doll market.’’

The jury in April agreed with MGA that Mattel stole its trade secrets when company employees got into MGA’s showrooms at toy fairs using phony business cards.