A Mombasa-based tycoon is suing disposable consumer products firm, Bic and its former local franchise holder, Haco Industries, for Sh20 million for alleged defamation.
Ashok Doshi has also cited loss of business after his firm Doshi Iro Mongers was linked with the importation of counterfeit Bic pens.
Haco and Societe Bic had lodged a complaint to the Kenya Bureau of Standard (Kebs) that Doshi’s company was selling counterfeit Bic pens in 1996.
Mr Doshi and Atul Shah, the proprietor of troubled retailer Nakummat Supermarkets, were consequently arrested and charged in court.
Mr Doshi through his company had imported 400 cartons of the Bic ballpoint pens from China which he sold to Nakumatt and several other customers in Mombasa and Nairobi.
Doshi, who was testifying before Mombasa Chief Magistrate Evans Makori on Tuesday, said despite being acquitted by a magistrates court in Nairobi on July 10, 1997, they were charged again with a similar offence in 2002, after Haco complained to Kebs.
Mr Doshi is now seeking damages for what he terms wrongful prosecution.
“We were inspected by Kebs on August 23, 2002, after Haco launched a complaint that we had a further consignment of counterfeit Bic biro pens yet these were the same consignment of 1996 that was left in my possession,” Mr Doshi told the court. While being cross-examined by his lawyer Willies Oluga, Doshi said they agreed to settle the matter with Societe Bic and Haco and paid Sh15 million for the pens and agreed that he would keep the whole consignment.
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