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Apple v. Samsung judge will consider allegation that Apple and jury foreman withheld key information

News by Andrew Kameka on Friday November 09, 2012.

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U.S. District Court Judge Lucy Koh will consider whether Apple withheld information about a jury foreman that may have led to an unfair award of $1.05 billion to Apple for Samsung's copying of its products. Judge Koh will consider Samsung's allegation that Apple may have known that jury foreman Velvin Hogan is a former employee of Seagate, a company with a close relationship to Samsung, who was sued by his former employer in 1993. Koh will consider the matter at a December 6 hearing may compel Apple to disclose if and when it discovered information that may have been relevant to Hogan's ability to be an impartial juror.

Samsung argues that Hogan hid key details about his personal and work history that may have influenced his decision in Apple v. Samsung. The Korean manufacturer claims that it did not receive a fair trial because Hogan concealed information during the jury selection process. Judge Koh will consider if Apple discovered information that would call Hogan's impartiality into question, and if the company was obligated to share that information with Samsung. Koh wrote in her order:

At the December 6, 2012 hearing, the Court will consider the questions of whether the jury foreperson concealed information during voir dire, whether any concealed information was material, and whether any concealment constituted misconduct. An assessment of such issues is intertwined with the question of whether and when Apple had a duty to disclose the circumstances and timing of its discovery of information about the foreperson. Accordingly, the Court will address Samsung's motion to compel at the December 6, 2012 hearing. If the Court grants Samsung's motion to compel, the Court will likely order supplemental briefing before ruling on Samsung's motion for judgment as a matter of law.

Samsung hopes that the judge will eventually throw out the jury's verdict, though that is a long shot because of the difficulty of proving that Hogan committed jury misconduct. Koh is expected to rule on the issue of whether Apple was obligated to disclose what it knew on December 6.

source: Groklaw

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Andrew Kameka
Andrew is based in Miami, Florida.

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