According to a report from Dutch publication Webwereld (via Computerworld), Apple has once again submitted doctored evidence related to their claims of design patent-related infringement by Samsung, this time to a court in Netherlands. This further supports claims by Bas Berghuis of Simmons and Simmons (Samsung’s lawyer) that Apple has been “manipulating visual evidence, making Samsung’s devices appear more similar to Apple’s.”
“It surprises me that for the second time incorrect presentations of a Samsung product emerge in photographic evidence filed in litigation,” said Mark Krul, lawyer and IP law specialist at Dutch firm WiseMen. “This is not appropriate and undermines Apple’s credibility both inside and outside the court room.”
If you aren’t up to speed with the legal disputes between Apple and Samsung in Europe… a court in Germany already granted a preliminary injunction halting sales of Samsung’s Galaxy tab 10.1 tablet in the EU (which has been since lifted pending an appeal). We already heard about Apple manipulating images in that case related to the iPad and Galaxy tab. This time, however, the report claims Apple doctored images of the Samsung Galaxy S smartphone in comparison to the iPhone 3G.
Apparently the changes made the Galaxy S appear smaller than it actually is to closer resemble the dimensions of the 3G, which is odd given the fact Computerworld reports Apple has confirmed the Galaxy S does include “some non-identical elements, such as the slightly larger dimensions.” This supports the idea that Apple isn’t trying to secretly submit this evidence to the courts. Many have noted a German court’s decision to grant Apple with the original preliminary injunction on the Galaxy tab didn’t take the doctored images into account. In fact, patent expert Florian Mueller noted “the court’s decision was based on both Apple’s motion and Samsung’s pre-emptive opposition pleading” and also stated “Samsung is in a legally weak position against Apple. If Samsung wants to inspire confidence, it has to understand that half the truth is sometimes tantamount to a whole lie.”
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While the cases in Europe are receiving the majority of media attention, there are also lawsuits pending between the two companies here in the U.S. A report from EdibleApple outlines the case in which Samsung appears to be trying to stall, while Apple pushes for a mid 2012 trial for patent related claims filed by both companies.
Seeking to obfuscate and delay Apple’s claims, Samsung filed an Answer to the Complaint on June 30 and brought counterclaims based on twelve disparate patents that are unrelated to the subject matter of Apple’s patents. These twelve patents, seven of which purportedly pertain to public wireless communications standards, raise numerous legal, factual, and technical issues that are completely unrelated to Apple’s claims and should be severed and set for trial on a separate track. Samsung itself does not believe that its claims require quick resolution, because it — unlike Apple — has not moved for expedited relief.