An adviser to the European Union's top court backed Google on Tuesday in a row with luxury goods maker LVMH over Internet advertising, saying the Web search firm had not infringed trade mark rights.
Advocate General Poiares Maduro considers that Google has not infringed trade mark rights by allowing advertisers to buy keywords corresponding to registered trade marks, the European Court of Justice said in a statement.
The case centers on whether Google has the right to sell brand names for Internet search advertising -- an important money-spinner for the group.
Companies such as shoe stores, for example, pay Google so their name appears alongside Internet search results for a brand of designer shoes they sell.
Louis Vuitton and others have been fighting such advertising after makers of imitation products piggybacked on those brands in online searches to attract customers.
The Luxembourg-based court follows the opinion of its advocates general in a majority of cases.