Federal jury says MGA, not Mattel, owns Bratz copyright

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Bratz dolls are seen for sale on the Target Holiday Boat on Nov. 29, 2002 in New York City.

A federal jury ruled on Thursday that the Bratz don’t belong in the same house with Barbie, ending a high-dollar dispute between two Southland toymakers over some very popular dolls.

El-Segundo-based toy giant Mattel thought it owned the Bratz, even though Van Nuys-based upstart MGA brought the dolls to market 10 years ago.

Mattel maintained that the Bratz designer was working for Mattel when he created the edgy urban dolls – then took his idea over to MGA.

Mattel sued and won a $100 million award in the first trial three years ago. But the court overturned that verdict last year, and the case came back.

This time, after a three-month trial and almost two weeks of deliberations, the jury sided with MGA. It ruled that Mattel misappropriated MGA’s trade secrets and awarded the smaller company $88 million in damages.

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