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Thursday, December 6, 2012

Apple and Samsung Tangle on Damages and Juror

SAN JOSE, Calif. - Samsung and Apple lawyers butted heads over the more than $1 billion in damages that a federal jury awarded Apple in August, but the judge in the case issued no new rulings in the case.

Samsung lawyers spent hours dissecting how the jury arrived at the enormous damages award, one of the biggest ever in a patent case, arguing that figure was excessive. Apple, for its part, asked Judge Lucy Koh for injunctions that would prevent Samsung from selling various products that were found by the jury to have infringed on Apple patents.

The most heated portion of the hearing was over Velvin Hogan, the jury foreman in the trial, whom Samsung has accused of mis conduct for not revealing before the trial that he was involved in a lawsuit against Seagate, a disk drive maker with which Samsung has a partnership.

John Quinn, a lawyer for Samsung, said Mr. Hogan had an agenda coming into the case and was “deliberately dishonest” for not revealing that he was involved in the Seagate lawsuit. Since Mr. Hogan disclosed during jury selection that he was previously employed by Seagate, Judge Koh asked Mr. Quinn why Samsung's legal team didn't ask about his relationship with the company.

“We were under the impression there were no issues between him and Seagate, at least no legal issues,” Mr. Quinn responded.

William Lee, a lawyer for Apple, defended Mr. Hogan. He said Apple believed in the integrity of the jury's verdict and said that Samsung was seeking to tarnish Mr. Hogan's reputation to change the outcome of a case in which it was found guilty. “I think it's outrageous that he's being called a liar,” Mr. Lee said.

Mr. Hogan didn't respond to a call for comment.

After the discussion about Mr. Hogan, Judge Koh then concluded the day's hearing. “I will try to get these orders out as quickly as I can,” she said.