The father of the late Tejano singer Selena reached a settlement in his Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit alleging that a company that makes car air freshener products used his daughter’s image without his permission.
Abraham Quintanilla Jr.’s lawsuit against Ruben Dario Villa and his Gilroy-based firm, Fuchila Fresheners LLC, was filed in November 2019 and sought unspecified damages and an injunction preventing the company from using the singer’s name and likeness in its products.
Attorneys in the case announced a resolution of the case with court papers filed on Christmas Eve. Judge Monica Bachner signed an order retaining jurisdiction to enforce the terms, which were not divulged.
Fuchila Fresheners makes car air fresheners and stickers designed to appeal to Latinos, depictions of which are attached as exhibits to the lawsuit.
Quintanilla holds the property rights to Selena’s name and likeness for commercial use, according to his court papers.
“Over the years, Quintanilla, by and through Selena’s name, voice, signature, photograph and likeness, has selectively endorsed and continues to selectively endorse a variety of products and services, including clothing and fashion accessories,” the suit stated.
According to his court papers, Quintanilla often receives substantial financial offers requesting permission to use his daughter’s name, voice, signature, photograph, likeness and persona for licensing, endorsing, marketing and promoting products and services, and exercises “careful consideration” in weighing those offers.
Quintanilla restricts such uses and licensing to products and services that are of “acceptably high quality” to him and for which compensation is commensurate, according to the suit.
The Fuchila products were advertised and promoted by the company through the use of Selena’s name and with slogans associated with Selena, including the quote “Anything for Selenas,” the suit stated.
Quintanilla alleged he was not contacted by Fuchila for permission to use the Selena image, nor has he been paid by the company for doing so.
Selena was shot to death on March 31, 1995, at age 23 in Corpus Christi, Texas, by Yolanda Saldivar, the president of her fan club. The singer had been scheduled to perform at the Los Angeles Sports Arena the following day.
Saldivar was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole in 30 years. Now 60, she will be eligible for parole in 2025.
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