John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Apple Says Samsung’s Email Purges Destroyed Potential Patent Evidence

Image by Joy of Tech

Apple’s patent spat with Samsung just keeps getting messier and messier. The latest dust-up: Apple has accused Samsung of “spoilation of evidence” in the pair’s patent-infringement case.

The allegation, made earlier this month in a motion discovered by Network World, claims Samsung destroyed “vast quantities of relevant evidence in blatant disregard of its duty to preserve all such evidence.” Samsung, it seems, routinely purges emails from custodian computers and, according to Apple, has continued to do so despite its duty to preserve evidence to the case.

From Apple’s motion:

Samsung’s ad hoc, unmonitored email ‘preservation’ methods have resulted in the irretrievable loss of unknown volumes of relevant emails. … For example, Judge Grewal recently compelled the deposition of Won Pyo Hong, the head of Samsung’s Product Strategy Team, in part due to an email in which Dr.Hong ‘directly orders side-by-side comparisons of Apple and Samsung products for design presentations.’

Apple and the Court cannot possibly know how many more emails Dr. Hong sent or received that would have supported Apple’s claims that Samsung copied Apple products had they not been deleted.

Harsh allegations, and ones that Samsung has decried as baseless. That said, this isn’t the first time the company has been called out for meddling with a discovery order. Just last week it was sanctioned by a California judge for withholding evidence. This just two weeks after another sanction for another failure to provide internal documents on a timely basis. Apple, in its motion, notes other instances as well.

So, as I said: Messy, and getting messier by the day. Which doesn’t bode well for the companies’ upcoming court-ordered mediation talks on May 21 and 22.

(Image: Joy of Tech)


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