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Patent trollin’: U.S. Supreme Court won’t hear VirnetX’s bid to revive a jury verdict against Apple

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to hear patent-licensing company VirnetX’s bid to revive a $502.8 million jury verdict it won against Apple in a dispute over internet-security patents, reports CNBC.

The justices turned away the appeal of the Nevada-based company (which I consider a patent troll) of a lower court’s decision to overturn the verdict against Apple that had been reached by a jury in Tyler, Texas. VirnetX had challenged the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s decisions to invalidate its patents.

This is all part of a long-running battle. In March 2023, convinced a U.S. appeals court to uphold a patent tribunal’s ruling that could imperil an US$502 million verdict for VirnetX in the companies’ long-running fight over privacy-software technology.

The legal brouhaha has been raging for over eight years. In January 2014, VirnetX, considered by many (including me) to be a “patent troll,”  filed a motion with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas seeking to supplement its infringement contentions against Apple, the defendant in a patent infringement lawsuit. The tech giant was accused of violating four patents. 

In April 2018, a jury found that Apple infringed all four and ordered the company to pay more than $500 million in damages, which was later raised to $600 million with fees and interest. But the damages award was thrown out by the Federal Circuit, which ruled in November 2021 that Apple had only infringed two of the four patents.

By the way, a patent troll is an individual or an organization that purchases and holds patents for unscrupulous purposes such as stifling competition or launching patent infringement suits. In legal terms, a patent troll is a type of non-practicing entity: someone who holds a patent but is not involved in the design or manufacture of any product or process associated with that patent.

Article provided with permission from AppleWorld.Today
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