U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California, on March 1 cut the damages award after finding that the jury based its decision on an incorrect legal theory.
“We are pleased that the court decided to strike $450,514,650 from the jury’s award,” Nam Ki Yung, a spokesman at Suwon, South Korea-based Samsung, said in an e-mailed statement today. “Samsung intends to seek further review as to the remaining award.”
Samsung and Apple have each scored victories in patent disputes fought over four continents since the iPad maker accused Asia’s biggest electronics producer in April 2011 of “slavishly copying” its devices. The companies continue to battle over patents as they seek dominance of a mobile-device market estimated by researcher Yankee Group at $346 billion in 2012, even as Apple remains one of Samsung’s biggest customers.
Koh, who previously rejected Cupertino, California-based Apple’s bid to ban U.S. sales of 26 Samsung devices, also denied the iPhone maker’s request to increase the jury’s award. The judge said the amount owed by the Galaxy maker was heavily disputed, and the jury wasn’t bound to accept either side’s damages estimate. The jury’s award for 14 other products stands at $598.9 million, she said.
Steve Dowling, a spokesman for Apple, had said the company had no comment on the ruling.
Koh ordered a new trial on damages for some Samsung products. The companies should consider appealing her ruling before the trial begins, the judge said.
A witness for Apple whose testimony the jury relied on “presented a theory that the court had ruled legally impermissible,” Koh said in her ruling. The judge said despite her explicit instruction that the theory couldn’t be used, “the amount of the award made plain that the jury had applied the impermissible theory anyway.”
The case is Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., 11- cv-01846, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California (San Jose).
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