PORTLAND, Ore. -- Three stripes and you're out -- if you're trying to imitate the trademark Adidas logo.

The German athletic shoe and clothing maker has gone to federal court to challenge a Ralph Lauren line of Polo clothing bearing a similar design.

Adidas America Inc., the Portland-based U.S. subsidiary of Adidas-Salomon, filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against Polo Ralph Lauren Corp. in U.S. District Court in Portland Aug. 4.

Adidas, the No. 2 athletic shoe company in the world after Beaverton-based Nike Inc., claims that a Polo jacket with two stripes on its sleeves bears too close a resemblance to an Adidas jacket with three stripes.

The Polo product "is likely to deceive, confuse and mislead actual and prospective purchasers into believing that apparel sold by (Polo Ralph Lauren) is manufactured by, authorized by, or in some manner associated with (Adidas), which it is not," the lawsuit said.


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