Mormon church sues leader of B.C. polygamous sect for trademark infringement

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VANCOUVER - The Mormon church has launched a trademark lawsuit against the leader of a small religious sect in B.C. that practices polygamy.

The Salt Lake City-based Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has filed a notice of claim in B.C. Supreme Court against a corporation registered by Winston Blackmore.

Blackmore is the self-proclaimed leader of a religious commune in southeastern B.C. known as Bountiful, where residents follow a fundamentalist form of Mormonism that still holds polygamy as a tenet of the faith.

The Canadian arm of the Mormon church says it tried to register with B.C.'s corporate registry, but the application was rejected because of an existing listing for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Inc.

The notice of claim says Blackmore registered that corporate name in 2010, which the church says violates its trademarks.

The lawsuit alleges Blackmore is attempting to suggest his group is sanctioned by the official church, which renounced polygamy more than a century ago and has disavowed any connection to Bountiful or similar groups in the U.S.

Organizations: Mormon church, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, B.C. Supreme Court

Geographic location: Southeastern B.C., Bountiful, VANCOUVER Salt Lake City U.S.

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