Epson wins patent ruling against Asian player

A federal judge has ruled that Hong Kong-based Multi-Union, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of recycled ink cartridges, is infringing Epson’s patent laws.

Rejecting Multi-Union’s arguments of non-infringement and patent invalidity, the court found 23 models of Multi-Union cartridges sold for use in Epson printers to be in breach of the OEM giant’s dot matrix patents.

However, the judge denied Epson’s request to remove the inkjet cartridges from the market, and refused to determine whether Epson’s dot matrix patents are valid. These issues will be tried by a jury in September 2005, who will also decide on monetary damages as requested by Epson.

A spokesperson for Multi-Union said: "While we are disappointed with the court’s interpretation of Epson’s dot matrix patents and the rulings that flow from it, we believe that those patents will eventually be declared either invalid or not infringed. Consequently, we will continue to aggressively defend ourselves in this matter."