Samsung Electronics Co. asked the judge to refuse Apple’s request to permanently ban Samsung from U.S. sales. This would result in more than 25 banned Samsung devices if the judge agrees to the ban.
On December 5, 2012 U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California listened to the arguments of the two companies regarding the requested ban. It seems that the $1.05 billion payment for damages was not enough to satisfy Apple.
Samsung’s lawyer, Charles Verhoeven said, “We see an intentional engagement of thermonuclear war throughout the world.” This was in reference to what the late Steve Jobs said regarding a “war” he wanted to start to prove that Android smartphones infringe on Apple’s patents. The late Apple CEO also said that he was willing to spend $40 billion.
Verhoeven told Judge Koh that Apple chooses to “compete in the court instead of the marketplace.” He added, “Are the parties going to talk? When? What do they need? We are willing to talk. The ball is in their court.”
The two electronics manufacturers were battling over the jury’s damages award. Judge Koh realized that despite the precision and consistency in the calculation of infringement damages by 28 Samsung devices, the panel might have made a mistake.
Regarding this, Harold McElhinny, Apple’s lawyer said, “If there is enough evidence in the record to justify that damage award then that verdict should be upheld.”
Kathleen Sullivan, another lawyer for Samsung, defended that the damages must be reduced by more than 600 million dollars. She said that, yes, the jury was precise, but it was hampered by a verdict form that was not enough to permit jurors to arrive at damages on a product-by-product basis.
Sullivan added, “You should reverse engineer” the patents to make sure the damages are “causally connected to the evidence.”
She also pointed out that only three of the twenty-six Samsung products Apple wants banned in the U.S. are still being sold. She said that Samsung was already able to design new devices that are completely unrelated to Apple’s patents.
Apple wants Samsung to pay more money than the jury awarded for the latter’s damages. The former urged Judge Koh to increase the award by $536 million with the reason that Samsung was trying to take the market away from Apple by copying the American firm.
Apple also stated that if the sales ban against Samsung is approved, they will ask the judge to extend the ban to include the latest Samsung products.
Samsung, meanwhile, argued that the verdict should be trashed because of the alleged misconduct of the jury’s foreman.
The Korean firm said that Velvin Hogan, the foreman, lied about the lawsuits and introduced erroneous legal standards during the jury deliberations, causing the jury to make a faulty verdict.
What the Foreman Did
Based on Hogan’s post-trial interviews with the media, Samsung stated that Hogan made a mistake when he told the jury that an infringement of a design patent is based on the look and feel of the device.
Because of this, Samsung is asking Judge Koh to overrule the jury’s findings on infringement by pointing out that patent law protects only designs that are new, original and ornamental, not general design concepts. Moreover, they also said that there is no evidence that the Korean company willfully infringed Apple’s patents (which was the basis for Apple’s request for higher damages).