Attendees at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on Thursday were treated to a more dramatic sight than the usual parade of gadgets and hired models showcasing products, when US Marshals marched onto the show floor to seize allegedly contraband hoverboards.
A Chinese company accused of making counterfeit hoverboards was raided and forced out of its booth, according to Bloomberg’s Joshua Brustein.
The raid was conducted at the request of a company called Future Motion, the original maker of the one-wheeled hoverboards.
The company says it owns the patents and trademarks of the product called Onewheel.
The company accused of making Onewheel knock-offs is called Changzhou First International Trade. It had its own booth at CES and was showcasing a product called the Trotter, which apparently had the same look and functionality as the Onewheel. The report says its staff members at CES had difficulty communicating in English.
According to the report, Future Motion worked with law enforcement for a week to conduct this raid. US Marshal official Lynzey Donahue was quoted as saying it served a court order at CES.
The Onewheel originally started as a side project, invented by Kyle Doerksen in his free time before he got a prototype working and took it to Kickstarter. The Kickstarter campaign quickly took off, crushing its $100,000 goal and eventually raising over $630,000. It made an appearance at last year’s CES too.
Here’s the video of the raid, courtesy of Bloomberg. You can read the full report here.