Abercrombie & Fitch Seeks Legal Action Against Fraudulent Online Retailer
(NEW YORK) -- Abercrombie & Fitch is taking legal action against an online store they say is fraudulently operating under their name and selling merchandise described as “n****r brown” in color.
The website, abercrombie-and-fitchoutlet.com, seems to bear all the typical trademarks of the trendy U.S.-based clothing retailer, from the black-and-white-tinted model photos right down to the company’s logo -- a silhouetted moose. As of Thursday night, the site was no longer accessible.
But an item featured on the website’s homepage – a pair of “N****r Brown Pants,” as they’re advertised – sparked outrage Thursday from consumers on blogs and across social media platforms like Twitter.
“Abercrombie and Fitch shows their true colors,” one person tweeted, referring to the description attached to the pair of men's pants.
“How can that even be real?!” someone else asked.
Turns out, it’s not. In a statement to ABC News, Abercrombie & Fitch said the website in question “is in no way affiliated” with the real company.
“[A]nd in any event, we do not condone racist language,” the statement continued. “This is a counterfeit website and we have initiated legal proceedings to shut it down.”
On its “About Us” page, the website in question does not directly note its lack of affiliation with Abercrombie, but says, “Abercrombie And Fitch, as we know, is a famous brand mainly specialized in trendy and casual clothing, which can be said that the new century, representatives of youth fashion.”
“We are honest, helpful, efficient, accountable and trustworthy, and we are committed to profitability and service,” the imposter page continues. “We want our colleagues and customers to feel At Home while shopping on our website.”
BusinessInsider reports that the website is registered to an address in China and that the whole controversy may have been caused by faulty translation software.
Nonetheless, Abercrombie & Fitch notes on its website safeguards consumers can take to protect themselves from fraudulent retailers.
“The only way to ensure you are purchasing genuine first quality gear is to visit one of our namesake stores or to visit our online store,” the company says.
“No other website is authorized to sell Abercrombie & Fitch merchandise,” they note. “Don't be fooled by the counterfeiters that attempt to copy the look of our website by stealing our images and content or by including our name within their domain address.”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio