2018 WL 460653
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United States Court of Appeals,
PRO-FOOTBALL, INC., Plaintiff-Appellant,
Amanda BLACKHORSE; Marcus Briggs-Cloud; Phillip Gover; Jillian Pappan; Courtney Tsotigh, Defendants-Appellees,
United States of America, Intervenor-Appellee,
Constitutional Law Professors; Cato Institute; The Rutherford Institute; Don Bettelyoun; Fort McDermitt Paiute Shoshone Tribe; Boyd Gourneau; Native American Guardians Association; Peter MacDonald; American Civil Liberties Union; American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia; American Civil Liberties Union of the Nation’s Capital; First Amendment Lawyers Association; Russ Versteeg, Amici Supporting Appellant,
Native American Organizations; The Navajo Nation; Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality; National Native American Bar Association; National Asian Pacific American Bar Association; Native Hawaiian Bar Association; California Indian Law Association, Amici Supporting Appellee.
Submitted: December 22, 2017
Decided: January 18, 2018
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, at Alexandria. Gerald Bruce Lee, District Judge. (1:14-cv-01043-GBL-IDD)
Before KING, FLOYD, and HARRIS, Circuit Judges.
Vacated and remanded by unpublished per curiam opinion.
Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit.
Pro-Football, Inc. (“PFI”), the owner of the professional football team the Washington Redskins, holds six trademarks for the team’s name and logos which are federally registered. The Defendants-Appellees, Amanda Blackhorse, Marcus Briggs-Cloud, Phillip Gover, Jillian Pappan, and Courtney Tsotigh, a group of Native Americans, filed a petition seeking the cancellation of the registrations of those trademarks, asserting that the trademarks consist of “matter which may disparage ... persons, living or dead, institutions, beliefs, or national symbols, or bring them into contempt, or disrepute.” 15 U.S.C. § 1052(a) (2012). The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board ordered cancellation of the registrations based on § 1052(a). On PFI’s appeal, the district court affirmed that order, and PFI now appeals.
While this appeal was pending, the Supreme Court in Matal v. Tam, –––U.S. ––––, 137 S.Ct. 1744, 1751, 198 L.Ed.2d 366 (2017), determined that § 1052(a) violates the free speech clause of the First Amendment. In light of this determination, we vacate the district court’s order and remand for further proceedings consistent with Tam. We dispense with oral argument because the facts and legal contentions are adequately presented in the materials before this court and argument would not aid in the decisional process.
VACATED AND REMANDED
--- Fed.Appx. ----, 2018 WL 460653 (Mem)