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Negotiating Canon’s legal labyrinth

November 29, 2018

2018 has been a complex and eventful year for Canon when it comes to the matter of patent infringement, and the month of November has been no exception.

In new legal documents viewed by The Recycler, it has been revealed that a new Seizure and Forfeiture Order has been issued, following the attempt by California Gardens Nursing Centre to import toner cartridges and components which infringe Canon’s general exclusion order Inv. No. 337-TA-918.

The USITC was informed of this infringement by the US Bureau of Customs and Border Protection, which “denied entry of the articles” into the country.

California Gardens Nursing Centre was subsequently informed that any such products they try to import, which violate the general exclusion order, will be “seized and forfeited to the United States”.

In other legal developments, following the OEM’s motion to partially terminate the portion of its well-documented ongoing USITC investigation concerning its ‘826, ‘021,’729, ‘764 and ‘765 patents, the Commission has revealed it has no opposition to such a termination. Indeed, the Commission has stated that “termination is in the public interest and consistent with the parties’ efforts to reduce the number of asserted claims.” As a result, Canon’s motion has been granted.

As part of the same investigation, Canon and the other parties involved all filed a joint motion calling to “exempt certain uncontested portions of witness statements”, as they agreed that “certain proposed claim constructions would be dispositive with respect to infringement for certain accused products.”

This motion has also been granted by the USITC, meaning that “The portions of the parties’ witness statements addressing the uncontested issues shall be segregated from the main witness statements, with separate exhibit numbers and a title indicating that they are contingent witness statements pursuant to this order.”

Finally, Canon has indicated that it is moving for “summary determination” that the Type A-I products of the respondents in the investigation (consisting of Ninestar Corporation, Ninestar Image Tech Limited, Ninestar Technology Company, Ltd., Static Control Components, Inc., Aster Graphics, Inc., Jiangxi YiboE-tech Co., Ltd., Aster Graphics Company Ltd., Print-Rite N.A., Inc., Union Technology Int’l (M.C.O.) Co. Ltd., Print-Rite Unicorn Image Products Co. Ltd., LD Products, Inc., and The Supplies Guys, Inc.) infringe its “asserted patents under claim constructions that do not require the claimed coupling member to be capable of pivoting or inclining with respect to the photosensitive drum.”

This legal document was filed on 28 November 2018.

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