A Manhattan judge has ordered Ivanka Trump to give a deposition in a lawsuit by an Italian designer accusing her of trademark infringement and ripping off a shoe design.
Aquazzura filed a lawsuit in June 2016 against Trump, her company IT Collection LLC and its footwear licensee Marc Fisher Holdings LLC, alleging that Trump's Hettie shoe is "virtually identical" to its Wild Thing design.
Despite "the obvious time constraints that Ms. Trump must now have.it is nonetheless true that she is alleged to have personal involvement in the events at issue in this lawsuit", Judge Forrest wrote in her three-page ruling.
The judge said she must submit to questions posed during a deposition lasting no more than two hours, "given Ms Trump's competing professional obligations", to take place in Washington, if that is her preference.
In a statement filed to the court aimed to avoid submitting a deposition in the case, Trump said she played no part in designing the shoe.
Aquazzura believes Ivanka's company knowingly stole their "Wild Thing" shoe design and sold the knockoff for a cheaper price in Ivanka's fashion collection.
Ivanka Trump who employs a number of factories in China for making shoes for her line has already been involved in a scandal related to her business. Its lawsuit seeks unspecified damages.
Trump stopped selling another shoe model similar to an Aquazzura design after the Italian company complained, according to the lawsuit.
In a court order issued on Friday, New York District Judge Katherine Forrest rejected Trump's assertion that she should be exempted from having to appear at a deposition in the case, because of the demands on her time as a senior White House official. The judge said the deposition should occur by the end of October on a mutually acceptable schedule. "That is the stuff of which factual disputes in litigation are made". At the same time, lawyers Ivanka trump referred to the limited time and employment, given her role in the White House.
It said the Wild Thing was one of its best-selling shoes and was not the first to be copied by Ms Trump's company.