Grieving parents in the U.S. are taking China’s giant Alibaba to the San Francisco court over the 3D printer that erupted in flames and claimed their son’s life. 

A civil suit officially filed on June 6 said that Calvin Yu bought a 3D printer in November 2019 from AliExpress, the U.S. portal of Alibaba. Yu died on June 11, 2020, at his home in San Francisco. Officials ruled that he was killed by a fire caused by a printer malfunction, which ignited the couch.

The parents alleged that the Chinese e-commerce giant should have been aware that the device was defective when they put it on sale. The printer manufacturer, Chinese electronic firm Shenzhen Tronxy Technology Company Limited, was also sued. The model that killed Calvin Yu was a Tronxy X5SA 34V 3D printer.

The lawsuit claims against the defendant from six aspects, including manufacture and design defects, failure to warn of danger, negligence, post-self negligence, and survival action.

E-commerce behemoths such as Amazon and Alibaba are increasingly being sued for selling goods, despite being third-party sellers. But Chinese e-commerce platforms often fall into trouble with fake and pirated goods.

In February, the U.S. added AliExpress to a list of notorious piracy markets, saying it facilitates substantial trademark counterfeiting. The Office of the United States Trade Representative said there had been increasing amounts of counterfeit goods on the platform. These include items displayed as counterfeit and items that are falsely labeled as genuine.

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