26
Jun
By Eric Schweibenz
On June 24, 2009, the ITC issued a Notice of Commission Decision to affirm-in-part and reverse-in-part a final Initial Determination (“ID”) finding a violation of section 337 by Sharp Corporation, Sharp Electronics Corporation, and Sharp Electronics Manufacturing Company of America, Inc. (collectively, “Sharp”) as a result of infringement of certain claims of U.S. Patent No. 6,771,344 (the “‘344 patent”).

This investigation was instituted on January 25, 2008, based on a complaint filed by Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. of Korea.

On January 26, 2009, Chief ALJ Paul J. Luckern issued his final ID finding a violation of section 337 by Sharp as to the ‘344 patent and U.S. Patent No. 6,937,311 (the “‘311 patent”).

On March 30, 2009, the Commission determined to review: (1) the ALJ’s construction of the claim term “domain dividers” found in the ‘311 patent; (2) the ALJ’s determination that Sharp’s LCD devices infringe the ‘311 patent; (3) the ALJ’s determination that the ‘311 patent is not unenforceable; and (4) the ALJ’s determination that the asserted claims of the ‘344 patent are not invalid as anticipated by U.S. Patent No. 5,309,264 (the “264 patent”).

In the Notice, the Commission construed the term “domain dividers” in the ‘311 patent to mean “apertures formed in the conductive layer comprising the electrode.”  The Commission also reversed ALJ Luckern’s ruling that Sharp’s LCD devices infringed the asserted claims of the ‘311 patent in view of its new claim construction for the term “domain dividers.”  Further, the Commission took no position on the validity of the ‘311 patent under 35 U.S.C. § 112 ¶ 1, or the unenforceability of the ‘311 patent.  Additionally, the Commission affirmed ALJ Luckern’s finding that the asserted claims of the ‘344 patent are not invalid in view of the ‘264 patent.  The Commission also affirmed ALJ Luckern’s determination of a violation of section 337 with respect to the ‘344 patent.

Regarding the issues of remedy, the public interest, and bonding, the Commission also (1) issued a limited exclusion order against Sharp; (2) issued cease and desist orders prohibiting Sharp Electronics Corp. and Sharp Electronics Manufacturing Co. from conducting certain activities in the U.S.; (3) found that the public interest factors do not preclude issuance of such orders; and (4) found that there should be no bond during the Presidential review period.
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