Vedder Thinking | News Vedder Price IP Litigators Achieve Important Win at the ITC
In a historic win for client Magotteaux International, a team of Vedder Price attorneys successfully convinced the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) to include attorneys fees in its judgment against a pair of companies found to be infringing upon Magotteaux’s U.S. patent rights. The Commission’s decision to award attorneys fees of $43,000 in the case marks one of the few times in the ITC’s history that such a judgment has been reached.
“We feel vindicated by the ITC’s ruling in this case,” stated John J. Gresens, who led the Vedder Price team. “We are especially relieved by the Commission’s decision to award attorneys fees and believe it shows how egregious this respondent’s conduct truly was.”
The case, Magotteaux International S.A. v. AIA Engineering Ltd., VEGA and FAR, involved the importation of products that infringed upon the rights of the Magotteaux pursuant to U.S. Patent RE 39,998. The products, advanced composite materials involved in crushing, grinding and wear-resistant castings, were destined for a variety of heavy industrial applications in the cement, aggregates and electric power generation industries. After siding in Magotteaux’s favor last December, the ITC spent the past five months assessing the flagrance of the case before ultimately choosing to include attorneys fees in its decision.
“We appreciate both the Administrative Law Judge and full Commission’s decision to side with our client,” remarked Robert S. Rigg, who was lead trial counsel on the case. “We are glad the Commission agreed that the sort of conduct demonstrated by the defendant is truly unacceptable.” The ITC, the division of the U.S. Department of Commerce charged with monitoring trade practices, has broad enforcement power but has rarely included attorney fees in its patent infringement judgments.