New York -- A U.S. District Court judge ruled last month
against Tele-Communications Inc.'s bid to throw out a patent-infringement suit filed
by Intellectual Property Development Inc. on summary judgment.
The suit, filed in 1994, covers a patent for hybrid
fiber-coaxial networks that IPD said is the same type used by the cable industry.
David Zaslowsky, a partner with the New York office of
Baker & McKenzie, which represents IPD, called Judge Sonia Sotomayor's opinion
"a partial victory" for his client. "The next step is a trial by
jury," he said.
Scott Partridge, outside counsel for TCI and a partner with
Baker & Botts L.L.P., said last week, "We're proceeding with our defenses,
not the least of which is the invalidity of the patent."
The opposing sides are scheduled to meet in court April 15
to discuss a trial date.
IPD said it has exclusive rights to commercialize its HFC
patent under an agreement with Arthur Andersen & Co. S.C., which liquidated former
patent-holder Maxwell Communications Ltd.