Boston University Settles Bulk of Diode Patent Claims

, The National Law Journal

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A lawyer for Boston University has informed two federal judges that it is in the process of settling cases with some two-dozen corporate defendants over a patent on light-emitting diodes.

The university filed the notice on Monday in 25 cases against defendant groups representing either a single company or a company and one or more subsidiaries. The companies will take a license on the intellectual property through middleman RPX Corp., the university said.

BU has filed some 43 lawsuits since October 2012 against targets including Amazon.com Inc. over its Kindle products, Canon Inc. for its cameras and Microsoft Corp. for tablet computers. Some have been consolidated for discovery and other pre-trial matters.

Seven defendants in a consolidated case that otherwise is part of the settlement have not joined in the agreement, including Arrow Electronics Inc.; ComponentsMax Inc.; NRC Electronics Inc.; Nu Horizon Electronics Corp.; Epistar Corp.; Everlight Electronics Co. Ltd.; and Lite-On Inc. A least a dozen other cases also remain pending.

Of the defendants that are participating, Dell Inc. would not comment on pending litigation, according to its lawyers at Alston & Bird of Atlanta. Amazon.com declined through its lawyers at Fish & Richardson to comment.

BlackBerry Ltd. also refused to comment.

Michael Shore, a partner at Shore Chan DePumpo in Dallas who is lead counsel for the university, did not respond to requests for comment. Erik Belt, an intellectual property partner at McCarter & English in Boston, local counsel for the university, declined to comment.

Of the remaining defendants contacted, none had commented by 4 p.m. on Monday.

Sheri Qualters can be contacted at squalters@alm.com.

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