Court Dismisses Patent Case against Quickturn Design Systems Brought by Aptix Corporation and Meta Systems Inc. San Francisco -- June 15, 2000
- In a ruling released yesterday, Judge William Alsup of The United States District Court for the Northern District of California granted a motion to dismiss Aptix Corporation and Meta Systems v. Quickturn Design Systems, Docket No. C 98-00762 WHA (EDL). In the suit, Quickturn was alleged to infringe a patent owned by Aptix and licensed to Meta, a subsidiary of Mentor Graphics Corporation. Judge Alsup granted the motion to dismiss on the grounds that Aptix's CEO, Dr. Amr Mohsen, falsified and destroyed evidence during the litigation.
In his opinion, Judge Alsup specifically denied Quickturn's allegations that Meta or Mentor Graphics® had engaged in any misconduct. Moreover, with respect to Meta, Judge Alsup stated "Meta may be a victim, but Meta must consider its own possible remedies against Aptix for [Aptix's] conduct in ruining the patent."
The court made several findings that Dr. Mohsen engaged in serious misconduct and, as a result, found the Aptix patent to be unenforceable by anyone, including a licensee like Meta. The court ordered Aptix to pay Quickturn all of its attorneys fees and expenses. Judge Alsup denied any sanctions against Meta or Mentor.
"While the court specifically found no Meta and Mentor wrongdoing, we are of course disappointed in the courts ruling. Mentor Graphics has several separate, and we believe very strong ongoing actions against Quickturn asserting, among other things, that Quickturn stole Meta's trade secrets, Quickturn fraudulently applied for patents on the stolen technology and that Quickturn's Mercury and Mercury Plus products infringe several Meta patents," said Dean Freed, general counsel of Mentor Graphics Corporation. "We intend to continue to prosecute these actions vigorously."
Mentor Graphics Corporation (Nasdaq: MENT) is a world leader in electronic hardware and software design solutions, providing products and consulting services for the world's largest electronics and semiconductor companies. Established in 1981, the company reported revenues over the last 12 months of more than $500 million and employs approximately 2,600 people worldwide. Company headquarters are located at 8005 S.W. Boeckman Road, Wilsonville, Oregon 97070-7777. World Wide Web site: www.mentor.com.