Dating made in japan
Fujigen Gakki, as manufacturer, was also named in the suit.
The problem was, by the time Norlin sued, Ibanez had changed their headstock shapes from "open book" to a (ironically) more Guild-styled top: Differences in Headstock Style: With nothing left to sue over, Norlin and Hoshino settled the suit, and it never came to court.
Loosely defined (and coming into more popular use on sites such as e Bay and Craigslist) a "lawsuit" guitar is ANY old guitar made outside of the USA that is a copy of a popular US-made guitar.
However, Fujigen Gakki, the manufacturer of Ibanez-branded guitars would provide stock, no-name images to Hoshino and other distributors for use in their catalogs. Fujigen only had to take one picture of a guitar instead of one with each different brand on it.
They are based in Japan, but also have a US subsidiary, Hoshino USA, headquartered in Bensalem, Pennsylvania.
Hoshino owns no manufacturing facilities beyond a small custom shop in California.
Through the 1970s and early/mid 1980s, Fujigen was the exclusive manufacturer of electric Ibanez guitars and basses.
It's this intricate relationship between distributor (Hoshino), brand (Ibanez) and factory (Fujigen) which makes for much of the initial confusion surrounding MIJ guitars and their origins.