US court fails to reinstate $1.5 bln Lucent award

WASHINGTON, Sept 25 Thu Sep 25, 2008 12:21pm EDT

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WASHINGTON, Sept 25 (Reuters) - Alcatel-Lucent (ALUA.PA) lost a fight to win back a $1.5 billion award against Microsoft (MSFT.O) as an appeals court ruled on Thursday in favor of the software giant in the patent battle.

A lower court jury in San Diego had found that Microsoft infringed two MP3 digital music patents but U.S. District Judge Rudi Brewster disagreed with the jury, and said Microsoft had not violated one of the patents and had licensed the other. The judge threw out the jury's award.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which hears appeals in patent cases, agreed with the lower court judge.

"We affirm the lower court's grant of JMOL (judgment as a matter of law) based on lack of standing for one patent and based on non-infringement for the other patent," the court said in its ruling. (Reporting by Diane Bartz; Editing by Tim Dobbyn)

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