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Stewart, Lagasse won't sell Solingen knives

NEW YORK (AP) -- A federal court says Martha Stewart, Emeril Lagasse and the Home Shopping Network have agreed to stop using the name of the city of Solingen, Germany, to sell knives.

In September 2012 a German trade association accused Stewart, Lagasse, HSN, and SED International Inc. of counterfeiting, trademark infringement and false advertising for selling knives bearing the word Solingen.

The rules of the trade association, Commerce Wuppertal-Solingen-Remschied, say that knives bearing the name Solingen have to be made in the city of Solingen and meet other requirements. The knives that Stewart and Lagasse were selling are made in China. They were sold online and on the Home Shopping Network, which is owned by HSN Inc.

Two law firms said the defendants also paid the trade association an undisclosed amount.

The settlement was approved by the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida on Jan. 28.

Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. said that it licensed the knives and did not know about the certification mark before the lawsuit was filed.

"We were led to believe that the Emeril brand knives of our licensee, SED International, were made with steel from Solingen, Germany," the company said in a statement Tuesday. "At that time, our licensee worked with the manufacturer to immediately remove the knives from the marketplace. Martha Stewart, Emeril Lagasse and their respective companies did not contribute any financial amount toward this settlement."