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July 16, 1998


By CBR Staff Writer

Xerox Corp is claiming an early victory over Hewlett-Packard Co in the patent infringement suit relating to laser toner cartridges filed by HP last year (CI No 3,263). A federal judge has rejected a request by HP for a preliminary injunction which would prohibit Xerox from selling a range of HP compatible cartridges in their current packaging. HP had also sought a recall of all products already sold in that packaging. In denying the request, US District Judge Susan Illston ruled that HP had not sufficiently demonstrated its ability to support its allegation that the design of the packages violated HP trademarks. HP had contended that the packaging misled consumers into thinking that the Xerox products were endorsed or sponsored by HP, but apparently were unable to prove to the judge that consumers were indeed confused. HP was not deterred by the judge’s decision, saying that it fully intends to proceed to trial in the case and that the current decision should not impact the jury trial that it expects will be held early next year. HP also said it’s confident that the jury will protect its name and trademark. Meanwhile, Xerox has a patent infringement suit against HP it filed back in May (CI No 3,420) claiming willful patent infringement over technology contained in certain HP ink jet printers and related supplies. HP responded to that suit with a counterclaim of its own.

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