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Aster comments on USITC GEO

Aster comments on USITC GEO

June 9, 2015

Aster distribution centre webThe manufacturer has stated that it is “fully prepared” for the GEO, which is expected to be enforced later this year.

The case at the United States International Trade Commission (USITC) began in May 2014, following in the wake of Canon’s first case at the District Court for the Southern District of New York, which itself began in February 2014. Both cases concerned infringement of the OEM’s “dongle-gear” within toner cartridges – specifically the HP P2035, 2055 and P3015 – which are sold for use in more than 50 models of Canon and HP laser beam printers.

Defendants including Ninestar Image Tech Limited; Zhuhai Seine Technology Co., Ltd.; Ninestar Technology Company, Ltd.; Seine Tech (USA) Co., Ltd.; Seine Image (USA) Co., Ltd.; Nano Pacific Corporation; Ink Technologies Printer Supplies, LLC; Katun Corporation and Linkyo Corporation all reached an agreement with the OEM, as did ILG. The case was announced to be proceeding towards a GEO (General Exclusion Order) in February earlier this year, and Aster Graphics reached a settlement with Canon in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, the District Court of The Hague in the Netherlands, and the Paris First Instance Court in late 2014 and early 2015.

The company has stated that the USITC’s Administrate Law Judge Shaw has issued his initial determination on the case, with a GEO recommended, and added that this is set to be issued by 14 September, with only a 60-day Presidential review period “before the GEO becomes fully enforceable”. Aster added that it is getting “prepared” for the GEO, which will “prohibit all importers from importing toner cartridges [that are] the same or substantially [similar to] the infringing products, including all defendants in this investigation as well as those who have not been accused in this investigation”.

Aster added that its agreement with Canon releases it and its customers’ “legal liability for the sold products in the past”, and noted that “per the agreements with Canon, there will be no cease and desist order in the current USITC investigation against Aster and its customers”.

Leon Yin, President of Aster Graphics, commented: “The result is just like what we have expected. Aster has fully prepared for this determination and for the coming GEO. Aster is a reliable aftermarket printer manufacturer with strong expertise in IP development. We have worked out a solution avoiding infringement on Canon’s dongle gear patents. The initial determination or the coming GEO will not affect Aster or its customers’ sales on the related products.”

This solution, according to the company’s Chief IP Engineer, “is called Smart Coupling”, and has been “approved by our experienced and professional in-house IP engineers and a well-known US patent firm. We are quite confident that our product is 100 percent non-infringing. We have applied [for] our own patent in [the] USPTO which has been granted with the patent number US 8731435.

“Aster always respects other parties’ intellectual properties and has been investing heavily into its own innovation and technology. Aster has been awarded over 200 patents worldwide, and will continue supplying its customers with its IP-compliant products to benefit and protect its customers.”

Categories : World Focus

Tags : Aster Canon IP

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