02
Sep
By Barry Herman
On August 31, 2009, ALJ E. James Gildea issued an initial determination (Order No. 24) in Certain Cold Cathode Fluorescent Lamp ("CCFL") Inverter Circuits and Products Containing the Same (Inv. No. 337-TA-666).  In the ID, ALJ Gildea granted the August 14, 2009 motion of Complainants O2 Micro International Ltd. and O2 Micro Inc. (collectively “O2 Micro”) and Respondents LG Electronics, Inc. and LG Electronics USA (collectively “LG”), seeking termination of the investigation with respect to LG.  The motion was based on a settlement agreement between O2 Micro and LG that apparently settled all of the existing disputes between O2 Micro and LG. 

According to the ID, O2 Micro and LG executed a Memorandum of Understanding between them on July 30, 2009.  They represented in their joint motion that there were no other agreements between O2 Micro and LG concerning the subject matter of the investigation.  O2 Micro and LG asserted that termination of the investigation “would pose no threat to the public interest” and would result in “conservation of the parties’ time and resources.”

The Commission Investigative Staff (“Staff”) supported the motion because it complied with the procedural requirements of Commission Rule 210.21(b)(1).  Further, the Staff found that, though the entered agreement contemplated a more detailed agreement, it was “sufficiently binding to provide ‘an appropriate basis on which to terminate this investigation…’”  Moreover, the Staff argued that the agreement appeared to settle all existing disputes between O2 Micro and LG.  The Staff also supported the motion because the dismissal was not contrary to the public interest.

ALJ Gildea found that O2 Micro and LG complied with the requirements of 19 C.F.R. § 210.21 (b).  Noting that “termination of litigation under these circumstances as an alternative method of dispute resolution) is generally in the public interest,” ALJ Gildea agreed with O2, LG, and the Staff, and granted the motion to terminate the investigation with respect to LG.
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