Newsflash: Apple and Samsung really don’t get along. At all.
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It seems like we hear new updates everyday about the way these two tech giants are attacking one another in courts around the world. The rumor mill is hot with Samsung potentially stopping their supply of touchscreens for Apple. Samsung has leveled their attacks for the next round of court battles over the billion dollar settlement, and now Apple has their defense ready.
Apple is focusing their argument on Samsung’s allegations over juror Velvin Hogan. Hogan, as you’ll recall, had some negative experience with patent suits himself, and Samsung argued that Hogan’s judgment was compromised over the matter. Not only that, Samsung argued that Hogan convinced the other jurors to side with Apple in the case because of Hogan’s rocky relationship with Seagate (which Samsung partners with).
Apple delivered the following response in its statement:
“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 verdictâ€”it could have discovered the Seagate complaint. By doing nothing, Samsung waived its objections.”
Regardless of Apple’s stance over Samsung’s objection, the South Korean manufacturer is going to have a tough time proving its stance. Cases with much worse circumstances regarding poor juror conduct were able to get past similar accusations in the past.
Santa Clara patent law professor Brian J. Love pointed out that this problem relates to Federal Rules of Evidence rule 606(b). The rule states that courts’ decisions can be changed if “extraneous prejudicial information was improperly brought to the jury’s attention.”
Hogan’s involvement with Seagate does not seem to imply such “extraneous” prejudice.
We’ll see how the case plays out as the tech companies head back to court to duke it out.