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Apple files rebuttal to Samsung jury misconduct claims

updated 03:53 pm EDT, Sat October 20, 2012

States that Samsung had their chance to remove foreman, chose not to

While the trial has been over for nearly two months, the legal jousting between Apple and Samsung in the first smartphone patent trial in the US between the pair of industry giants continues. Apple has filed its response with Judge Lucy Koh's court to Samsung's allegations of jury misconduct, and argues that Samsung had their opportunity to remove foreman Velvin Hogan during jury selection. In failing to do so, Apple believes that Samsung's jury misconduct accusations are baseless.

Hogan was asked during the jury selection if he had been in any lawsuits -- he did mention one suit, but failed to disclose a breach of contract suit with Seagate. According to Samsung, this trial against the hard drive manufacturer indicates that he could be biased against Samsung, which also makes hard drives among other products. Hogan did say that he had been employed by Seagate during the selection process, and Apple claims that if Samsung was concerned about bias based on his employ by Seagate, that the Quinn Emanuel lawyers responsible for the jury selection should have weeded the man out then.

Apple says in the filing that "Mr. Hogan disclosed during voir dire that he had "worked for Seagate, and Samsung also knew that day that Mr. Hogan failed to disclose that he 'declared bankruptcy in 1993.' If Samsung's recent acquisition of a 9.6% stake in Seagate were so important that bias toward Seagate could create bias against Samsung, it should have asked Mr. Hogan about Seagate. Had Samsung done so, or ordered the bankruptcy file -- the exact step it took only after it received the unfavorable jury verdict--it could have discovered the Seagate complaint. By doing nothing, Samsung waived its objections."

Apple's response notwithstanding, Samsung faces an uphill battle trying to convince the judge to call the jurors in to court for a hearing regarding conduct. Santa Clara patent law professor Brian J. Love said in a tweet that the Federal Rules of Evidence rule 606(b) has set the bar very high -- in another case, even evidentiary proof that the jurors drank heavily and used marijuana and cocaine at lunch breaks wasn't enough to call the jurors back to negate a verdict based on jury misconduct. Apple addresses this in its filing, and calls Samsung's claims insufficient to negate the verdict.

Rule 606(b)(2)(A) allows an exception for "extraneous prejudicial information was improperly brought to the jury's attention," but the foreman's prior legal involvement with Seagate seemingly has very little to do with Samsung, so proving that Hogan provided the extraneous prejudicial information would be difficult at best.

The case was brought by Apple after Samsung ignored warnings in 2010 from both the iPhone maker and its rival Google that Samsung's products were too derivative of Apple's designs in both trade dress and software. Apple has accused the company of "slavishly" copying from its innovations, down to the particular shade of green used in the identical "phone" icon.

Samsung countersued Apple, claiming it had in fact infringed on two of Samsung's patents, for which it asked for $400 million in compensation. The claims from Samsung were wholly rejected, and the company was awarded nothing. Another jury trial on different patent matters which spawned the sales injuctions on the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and Galaxy Nexus smartphone between the two giants is likely to take place in late 2013 or 2014.

Apple Response to Samsung Post-trial

by MacNN Staff



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