Ivanka Trump Ordered to Testify in Lawsuit Claiming Her Brand Plagiarized a Shoe Design
First daughter and White House adviser Ivanka Trump must give a deposition in a lawsuit claiming her clothing brand plagiarized a shoe design, a district judge ruled June 23.
Trump’s lawyers had filed a motion to prevent her from testifying, according to court documents reviewed by Fortune, but the district judge, Katherine B. Forrest of the Southern District of New York, denied the motion. However, Forrest allowed that the testimony is held in Washington D.C. and limited to two hours. It must be held by the end of October.
Aquazzura Italia, an Italian shoe company, sued Ivanka Trump’s brand and their footwear licensing partner Marc Fisher in June 2016. The company alleged that Trump and Fisher had plagiarized one of their shoe models, called “the Wild Thing” by creating an identical copy and launching it under a different name.
“Defendants have copied nearly every detail of Plaintiff’s well-known and coveted Wild Thing Shoe, from the shape and silhouette to the fringe covering the toes, to the tassel on the heel,” lawyers for Aquazzura wrote in the lawsuit.
Forrest ruled that Trump could not avoid a deposition because, as the brand’s CEO when the lawsuit was filed, she allegedly has a personal involvement in the lawsuit.
“The allegations are that the executive whose deposition is sought has high-level, authoritative, personal involvement,” she explained.
The first daughter stepped away from her business in January of 2017, but was still running the company when Aquazzura filed suit.
The Ivanka Trump brand declined to comment. The first daughter’s attorney did not respond to requests for comment.