In the movie, Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls, Ace Ventura (Jim Carrey) gets stabbed countless times by massive spears, knifed a few times, flipped completely over a couple times, and stepped and trampled upon.  He takes all of this with amazing equanimity.  But when his hair gets ruffled, he becomes furious and yells, “NOBODY MESSES WITH THE [hair] DO.”

Somebody is MESSING WITH MY DO.

Counterfeit drugs, money, razor blades, cigarettes, food, shoes, music, auto parts, software, purses, even fake Playboy bunnies.  None of that shocks anymore.

But today I just learned that there are those who take money to file trademarks in China and then simply run away.  A new client told me he had sent about $750 to what he thought was a legitimate China law firm to have his company’s brand name registered.  As soon as the first $750 hit Shanghai, he was asked to send an additional $600 to “cover the filing fees,” which he did.

A week later the website was down and the Shanghai “firm” was gone, “leaving no solid clues, nor trace, only a space in the lives of their friends.

Caveat emptor.

First time I had heard of anything like this.  Anyone else heard of such a thing?

UPDATE:  It turns out this scam is actually pretty common and it also turns out that in every case of which I am aware the scammers were neither licensed Chinese lawyers nor licensed Chinese trademark agents.  In other words, they are just people who run China trademark registration scams.