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Court dismisses patent infringement lawsuit against E Ink

Jeff Bezos, CEO and founder of Amazon, at the introduction of the new Amazon Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Paperwhite personal devices, in September 2012. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)
Jeff Bezos, CEO and founder of Amazon, at the introduction of the new Amazon Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Paperwhite personal devices, in September 2012. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

A federal judge has dismissed a patent lawsuit against E Ink Corp., the Cambridge company that supplies electronic-paper displays to the e-book industry, E Ink’s law firm said.

The law firm is Wolf, Greenfield & Sacks PC of Boston, which specializes in intellectual property issues.

Earlier this year, CopyTele Inc. filed a lawsuit alleging that E Ink had infringed on several patents that CopyTele controlled. E Ink argued that CopyTele had earlier assigned away its rights to the patents that were the focus of the suit and therefore lacked standing to sue E Ink.

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On its website, CopyTele describes itself as a company specializing in patent monetization and patent assertion.

On Tuesday, Judge Edward Chen of the US District Court for the Northern District of California granted E Ink’s motion to dismiss CopyTele’s complaint for lack of standing, Wolf Greenfield said. After issuing its opinion, the court entered final judgment in E Ink’s favor.

Robert A. Berman, CopyTele’s president and chief executive, offered his company’s take on the court’s decision. E Ink has been ordered to participate in an arbitration hearing that involves CopyTele and AU Optronics Corp. CopyTele filed suit against both AU Optronics and E Ink, alleging fraud, antitrust, conspiracy, breach of contract, and other violations in connection with the “attempted misappropriation” of CopyTele’s patented technologies, Berman said.

In an e-mailed statement, Berman wrote: “In the interest of judicial economy, the court is requiring E Ink to participate in the arbitration proceedings between CopyTele and AU Optronics and to first resolve the antitrust, fraud, conspiracy, and other allegations against them. Because issues in the arbitration must first be decided before the patent infringement case can proceed, it makes perfect sense for the court to dismiss the patent infringement case now without considering the merits of the case, and to allow CopyTele to refile the patent infringement case once the arbitration is over.”

Wolf Greenfield’s litigation team for this case included attorneys Michael Rader, Gerald Hrycyszyn, and Eric Kaviar as well as paralegal Saron Harry.

E Ink was purchased in 2009 by Prime View International of Taiwan, which is now known as E Ink Holdings Inc. E Ink makes the low-power black-and-white screens found on popular e-book readers like Amazon.com’s Kindle.

On Wednesday, CopyTele issued a press release saying that it has filed patent infringement lawsuits against Citrix Systems Inc. and Logitech International in connection with their Web conferencing services.

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