updated 12:53 am EDT, Wed July 25, 2012
Irritated judge gives option of split trial, Samsung refuses
Lawyers representing Apple and Samsung met for the second-to-last hearing before the mutual copyright violation trial that begins next week. A lot of ground was covered in a 90-minute hearing, with arguments heard about scheduling changes, what the press will see and how, Apple's damages demands, and what will go in the jury's notebooks.
Judge Lucy Koh heard from lawyers on both sides of the debate as they attempted to work out procedural issues affecting the details of the trial as it unfolds. About an hour into the hearing, Samsung requested longer presentation time allowed at trial, and the judge made no pretenses about even considering it. Samsung posited that they may need more than the 25 hours allowed to respond to Apple's wide-ranging claims. The judge was clearly irritated by the requests for reconsideration of witness time that Samsung had filed.
She addressed Samsung's lawyers curtly, saying that "you've already been to trial against Apple at the ITC, what is it you don't know now that leads you to believe you need unlimited witnesses, and that you need 400 exhibits?" Koh made it clear that the dates had been set, and that the 75 potential jurors for Monday's trial start have already been pre-screened to some extent, confirming availability for the multi-day trial. Jury winnowing by the Apple and Samsung legal teams won't occur until Monday.
Angrily, Koh added that if Samsung had wanted fewer rules on its presentation, she "could have put Samsung's case on a separate schedule, and given you a separate trial date, I see this motion...and I feel frustrated. I could have sent you to another district judge." Apple had previously requested a separation of the trials. Samsung's lawyer, Charles Verhoeven, quickly recanted the split suggestion by the judge, saying that Samsung's choice "is parity, and we'll take [the restrictions]."
The last hearing before the trial is scheduled for Friday, and will include a lawyer from news service Reuters trying to get a handle on what will be redacted, and what will be public. Koh suggested that she will be making the trial as open as possible. In a move nodding to the previous Oracle versus Google trial overseer, Judge William Alsup, a space has been made in the San Jose courtroom for the use of journalists, and exhibits will be deposited daily in that room on flash drives for use by the assembled reporters.
Samsung has been seen to be trying to delay this case as much as possible, perhaps due to the number of preliminary rulings that have gone against it. Efforts to streamline the trial have been made at the urging of Judge Koh, with the judge allowing patents dropped from this suit to be asserted at a later date, if needed. [via Ars Technica]