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January 2, 2009

German court fines Irish firm for infringing IDT patent

This patent relates to the processing of prepaid telephone calls

By CBR Staff Writer

US-based IDT Corporation has said that a German court has recently fined Lycatel Ireland and its managing director E30,000 each for violating the court’s injunction in a patent infringement case brought by Prepaid Cards, a Belgian affiliate of IDT.

The current decision came after the District Court of Duesseldorf, Germany, found on May 13, 2008 in a first instance decision that Lycatel Ireland, Lycatel Services, and certain of their present and former directors infringed upon the German part of the European patent EP 0 572 991. This patent relates to a procedure for processing prepaid telephone calls, and is the subject of an action brought by Prepaid Cards, the exclusive licensee of this patent.

The District Court of Duesseldorf found that the defendants committed the asserted patent infringing actions by providing prepaid calling card services in Germany with respect to the calling cards according to the type Messenger, Matrix, GHANAtel, Nigeriatel, Turkeytel, IndiaTEL, Pakistantel, Banglatel, Europetel, ArabTel, Africatel, MAXIAsia, AsiaTel, MaxiEUROPE, MaxiAfrica, Maxiworld, Globaltel and Easterntel.

A player in the prepaid international calling card market, Lycatel’s product portfolio comprises prepaid telephony services including calling cards, mobile services (MVNO), carrier to carrier wholesale services and residential indirect access services. The company claims to cater to over 8.5 million customers within expatriate and ethnic global niche segments that want to make low cost international calls.  

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