Owner of Sioux Falls’ Silencer Central wins copyright lawsuit

Gun News

The owner of Sioux Falls-based firearm accessory company and website Silencer Central won a major lawsuit against a former collaborator.

Brandon Maddox, owner of BMaddox Enterprises LLC, recently won a lawsuit alleging plagiarism against its ex-marketer, going all the way to the U.S. District Court.

Maddox is best known in the area as owner of gun silencer accessory company, Silencer Central (formerly called Dakota Silencer), but the lawsuit in question affected his separate website on federal firearms licensing and the approval process.

BMaddox Enterprises LLC sued for copyright infringement, false advertising and other deceptive practices against Milad Oskouie, Osko M Limited and Platinum Avenue Holdings Limited, successfully winning one charge and $100,000 in damages, ordered by US District Judge Ronnie Abrams on Aug. 18.

More: The Argus Leader is launching a new investigative initiative. You can help.

Maddox owned the rights and code for his website, ffl123.com, and his guidebook “Federal Firearms License Guide & Class 3 License Guide.” Yet, he said he noticed his website, book and its designs were copied by a one-time business collaborator, according to court documents.

In late 2013, Maddox hired a freelance web developer to increase traffic to his site, according to the suit filed in the US District Court in the Southern District of New York.

That freelancer introduced Maddox to Oskouie as “a collaborator working out of Australia,” the filing noted.

More: Construction starts on $2.5M Silencer Central headquarter renovation

At that time, Oskouie was involved with an internet marketing firm helping websites optimize their sites to appear at the top of search results on engines like Google. Later, Maddox noted that an Australian user was accessing his Chrome and other accounts.

Then it escalated. 

The website run by Maddox was altered to no longer show up in search engine results. By 2015, Osko was running a site under a close-to-identical name, text and with an overall design that was “substantially similar,” according to court documents. Oskouie’s firm even appeared to copy the newsletter and other firearms documents Maddox’s firm sent out.

In addition, the NRA Business Alliance noted that the Osko site was using its logo without the NRA’s knowledge or permission.

Maddox then sought to sue for misappropriation of trade secrets, copyright and other charges on two counts, and has won a first count. Although due to certain evidence notes, the over $200,000 sought by the second count will be determined by a judge before the trial completely wraps up.

The lawsuit did not reference or affect the Dakota Silencer company or its Sioux Falls stores. 

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