By Eric Schweibenz
On June 25, 2010, Hewlett-Packard Company of Palo Alto, California (“HP”) and Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. of Houston, Texas (“HPDC”) (collectively, “Complainants”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337.

The complaint alleges that Mipo International Ltd. of Hong Kong; Mextec Group Inc. d/b/a Mipo America Ltd. of Miami, Florida; Shanghai Angel Printer Supplies Co. Ltd. of China; Shenzhen Print Media Co., Ltd. of China; Zhuhai National Resources & Jingjie Imaging Products Co., Ltd. of China; Tatrix International of China; and Ourway Image Co., Ltd. of China (collectively, the “Proposed Respondents”) have engaged in violations of Section 337 through unlicensed importation into the U.S., sale for importation, and/or sale within the U.S. after importation of certain inkjet ink supplies and components thereof that infringe one or more claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,959,985 (the ‘985 patent) and 7,104,630 (the ‘630 patent).

According to the complaint, both the ‘985 patent and the ‘630 patent generally relate to printing-fluid containers, such as ink cartridges.

Complainants allege that each of the Proposed Respondents manufactures or purchases black and/or color ink cartridges compatible with the “HP 02” product line in China and sells such cartridges for importation into the U.S.  According to the complaint, the accused “HP 02” compatible cartridges infringe several claims of both the ‘985 and ‘630 patents.

Regarding domestic industry, Complainants name several inkjet ink supply products from the “HP 02” product line which they allege are protected by the ‘985 and ‘630 patents.  In addition, Complainants state that HP’s domestic industry activities include HP’s significant investment in plant and equipment, significant employment of labor and capital, and substantial investment in the exploitation of the ‘985 and ‘630 patents.  Complainants add that although HP does not presently manufacture its ink cartridges in the U.S., HP has conducted and continues to conduct many activities in the U.S. relating to its ink supply cartridges that practice the ‘985 and ‘630 patents.

As to related litigation, Complainants assert that on September 23, 2009, HP filed a complaint against the Proposed Respondents relating to the ‘985 and ‘630 patents in the Central District of California, which was later voluntarily dismissed on March 18, 2010.  In addition, according to the complaint, on September 23, 2009, HP filed a complaint in the ITC against the Proposed Respondents relating to the ‘985 and ‘630 patents, as well as two additional patents.  Certain Inkjet Ink Supplies and Components Thereof, 337-TA-691.  On June 3, 2010, at the request of HP, however, ALJ Essex terminated the investigation with respect to the ‘985 and ‘630 patents.

With respect to potential remedy, Complainants request that the ITC issue a permanent general exclusion order (or, in the alternative, a permanent limited exclusion order) and a permanent cease-and-desist order directed to each of the Proposed Respondents.