Wed, Jun 23, 2004 - Page 11 News List

Chunghwa Picture sues LG Philips over patents

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Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd (中華映管), a Taiwanese maker of flat-panel displays used in computers and televisions, filed a countersuit against LG Philips LCD Co for allegedly violating US antitrust laws.

Chunghwa Picture Tubes' allegations stem from a patent infringement suit that LG Philips filed against Chunghwa in 2002, claiming that some of its products infringe LG Philips's patents.

Chunghwa Picture Tubes claims LG Philips isn't the true owner of those patents.

LG Philips said last month it plans to spend US$2.9 billion this year to make more panels and compete with top liquid-crystal-display maker Samsung Electronics Co in the flat-panel market, which analysts predict will reach US$37 billion this year.

The suit, filed in US District Court in Los Angeles, contends that the real inventors of the disputed patents worked for Digital Equipment Corp and that LG Philips intentionally misled the US Patent Office by failing to reveal those inventors' names. The suit claims LG Philips lacks standing to sue on four out of six patents in its suit.

The patents are the property of Digital Equipment, and Chung hwa said it acquired the rights earlier this year from Hewlett-Packard Co, Digital Equipment's successor.

Chunghwa's suit seeks monetary damages and a court order to block the sale of the LG.Philips displays that allegedly infringe the patents.

Bruce Berkoff, a spokesman at LG Philips, did not return a telephone message seeking comment.

LG Philips is a joint venture of South Korea's LG Electronics Inc and Royal Philips Electronics NV of the Netherlands.

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