True Religion Apparel Inc. has won a default judgment in a New York district court against more than a hundred web sites selling counterfeit True Religion jeans out of China.

The judge in the case earlier this month ordered Xiaokang Lee and other defendants to pay the Vernon apparel maker $8.15 million each, for a total of $864 million in damages. Any web sites still operating were ordered disabled and turned over to True Religion. The judgment also applies to any new sites created by the defendants and later detected by the company.

The likelihood of the company receiving much of the damages is questionable, since the complaint filed in November admits that the whereabouts of most of the defendants is unknown.

The counterfeit sites with names such as Cheapertruereligionjeans.net and truereligionjeansforcheap.com were purporting to sell True Religion jeans for well under the $280 to $350 the clothing typically retails for at department stores.

The “defendants have gone to great lengths to conceal themselves and their ill-gotten proceeds from True Religion's and this court's detection including by using multiple false identities and addresses associated with their operations as well as purposely-deceptive contact information,” said the judge, Harold Baer Jr., in his judgment.

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