WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Samsung Electronics Co Ltd urged a U.S. appeals court on Tuesday to find that a jury in 2014 should not have made the South Korean company pay nearly $120 million to Apple Inc for infringing three patents.
Apple’s “quick links” patent, which accounts for more than $98 million of the damages award, was the main focus in Samsung’s latest effort to overturn major court victories by the U.S. technology company over the past two years.
During more than an hour of highly technical arguments, Samsung’s attorney Kathleen Sullivan said Samsung did not use the same technology as Apple to detect and link to specific data, such as phone numbers, in its phones’ Web browser and messenger applications.
Apple’s lawyer, William Lee, told the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, the nation’s top court specializing in patent issues, that the jury’s verdict was supported by “substantial evidence.”
Two of the three judges at the hearing seemed to question Apple’s arguments over the interpretation of the patent, which Sullivan said the appeals court had already rejected in a separate case. But Lee cautioned against accepting Samsung’s theory, which was rejected by the jury.
In court papers, Samsung also said the two other patents it was found to have infringed are invalid, an argument Apple said should be rejected.
The companies have appeared at the court several times over the last two years.
The latest appeal stems from the May 2014 verdict in a federal court in San Jose, California ordering Samsung to pay $119.6 million for using Apple’s patented technology without permission. The three infringed patents cover the iPhone’s slide-to-unlock, autocorrect and quick links features.
The same appeals court in September ruled that Apple should have been awarded an injunction in the case, barring Samsung from selling devices that infringe its patents. The court, however, said Samsung could remove the patented features without recalling its products.
In a separate lawsuit, Samsung on Dec. 14 paid Apple $548.2 million, part of what it owes for infringing different patents and designs of the iPhone. Samsung is continuing to fight that case by appealing part of the judgment to the U.S. Supreme Court. Another trial on further damages will be held in March.
The case is Apple Inc v. Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, No. 15-1171.
Reporting by Andrew Chung; Editing by Alexia Garamfalvi and Richard Chang