Cognex wins patent case against Acacia Research

MAY 23, 2008--Cognex Corp. (Natick, MA, USA), which makes machine-vision sensors, has won a patent lawsuit over Acacia Research Corp.

MAY 23, 2008--Cognex Corp. (Natick, MA, USA; www.cognex.com), which makes machine-vision sensors, has won a patent lawsuit over Acacia Research Corp. A federal court in Minnesota ruled Monday in favor of Cognex in its patent lawsuit against Acacia Research, Veritec Inc., and two of its subsidiaries, Cognex said. The court held that certain patent "is both invalid and unenforceable due to inequitable conduct by the defendants during the procurement of the patent," Cognex said.

The court also refused Acacia's request to dismiss a business defamation claim brought by Cognex against Acacia Research. Cognex filed its original complaint in 2006 after receiving information that Acacia Research had contacted Cognex customers to demand licensing fees relating to the patent in question.

Cognex chief executive Robert J. Shillman denounced "abusive patent trolling ... the activity of purchasing highly questionable patents from patent holders and then asserting them against well-respected and ethical corporations in the hope of extracting large monetary settlements (which are often calculated to be a bit less than the cost of litigation) ... has unfortunately become a growth 'business' in America over the past decade."

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