TAMPA — An artist is suing Mercedes Medical LLC, a medical facility, citing alleged breach of contract, copyright infringement and unjust enrichment.

Caleb Prochnow filed a complaint on Nov. 2 in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida against Mercedes Medical LLC, alleging that the medical facility breached its duty of good faith and fair dealing.

According to the complaint, the plaintiff alleges that in 2005, he created original pictorial illustrations of a cartoon hippopotamus, who is now immediately recognizable and referred to by defendant as “Henry the Histo-Potamus.” After a four-year arrangement for limited use as an illustration on Mercedes calendars, the medical facility asked for expanded use of the Henry images in return for royalty payments, the suit claims, adding that the defendant violated that agreement by using the images without making royalty payments. The plaintiff holds Mercedes Medical LLC responsible because the defendant allegedly refused to acknowledge and pay royalties for the plaintiff's rights of authorship and copyrights, and obtained profit at the expense of plaintiff's intellectual work.

The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks judgment against the defendant, an order permanently enjoining the defendant from further infringement, actual damages, disgorgement of all profits, costs of action, attorney’s fees and further relief as the court deems just. He is represented by Janelle A. Weber of Shutts & Bowen LLP in Tampa and David S. Moreland of Meunier Carlin & Curfman LLC in Atlanta.

U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida Case number 16-cv-03095

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U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida Tampa Division
801 North Florida Avenue
Tampa, FL 33602

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