Chuck Jones, prominent businessman and philanthropist in Murray, is currently in the midst of three lawsuits.
These new lawsuits are separate from an earlier lawsuit, which occurred this year involving David Griffin of Nashville, Tenn.
Griffin filed a complaint on Feb. 28 in U.S. District Court Western District of Kentucky in Paducah, Ky., against Jones, his wife Sarah and five of their companies, all of which are based in Murray.
That lawsuit was settled Aug. 22 after it was determined Griffin would assume a management role over the companies.
Jones could not be reached for comment on any of the three current lawsuits, and when called management within the company have no comment.
McGraw-Hill and Pearson Education vs. Jones and others
The newest claim involves McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. and Pearson Education, Inc., two of the largest publishers in the world. The companies filed a lawsuit against Jones, C.A. Jones Management Group, LLC; College Book Rental Company, LLC; and several other businesses and individuals on Sept. 20, in U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York.
McGraw-Hill and Pearson Education create and distribute textbooks throughout the U.S. and internationally.
The plaintiffs have filed five claims in the lawsuit. They claim the defendants are responsible for (1) direct copyright infringement, (2) contributing copyright infringement, (3) vicarious copyright infringement, (4) violation of the integrity of copyright management information and (5) trademark counterfeiting.
The plaintiffs claim the investigation against the defendants began on May 30, after a former UPS store manager in Paducah, Ky., reported to McGraw-Hill that three large boxes had broken, spilling a large quantity of uncut and unbound books.
The lawsuit accuses the defendants of obtaining its books from an illegal counterfeiting operation.
The claim is the defendants created altered textbooks with counterfeit covers, which infringe upon the plaintiff’s copyrights and trademarks. It goes on to state the defendants altered or removed copyright information and reproduced and distributed counterfeit-covered copies of the plaintiff’s textbooks.
The suit also requests a restraining order and injunction to prevent the defendants from further engaging in the activity.
College Book Rental Company vs. Jones
College Book Rental Company, formerly managed by Jones, has also filed a lawsuit and restraining order filed against him in Calloway County Circuit Court.
Myles MacDonald, currently running College Book Rental Company, alleges he noticed discrepancies in the paperwork of the business and went to the bank to check on them, where MacDonald found out Jones was in control of a company called Global Book Sellers, which was taking foreign textbooks and having them rebound as to appear as U.S. editions, which were then sold to College Book Rental.
The lawsuit was filed Sept. 20, and Circuit Judge Dennis Foust signed the restraining order.
Jones was scheduled to appear in Calloway Court Circuit Court on Wednesday Sept. 26, but filed a continuance.
Planters Bank of Hopkinsville, Ky. vs. Jones
In late August, Planters Bank of Hopkinsville, Ky., filed a lawsuit against Jones in Calloway County Circuit Court for nearly $1.3 million for allegedly breaching loan agreements.
Planters alleges the defendants, Jones and several of his companies, failed to follow the terms of a loan agreement established in 2010. The bank is requesting a receiver be appointed to the companies to take over the business operations.
When called, employees of the recently closed University Book & Bean said the store will contact all of the students who rented books from them via email during the weeks prior to finals week. Management is currently the only personnel maintaining store operations.
Story by Chris Wilcox, News Editor.