WASHINGTON The Supreme Court rejected on Tuesday an appeal by South Korea's Hynix Semiconductor Inc to take up the question of whether chip designer Rambus Inc illegally sued for patent infringement.
Hynix and others have accused Rambus of failing to tell the standard-setting organization JEDEC (Joint Electron Device Engineering Council) about its patented technologies, while advocating those technologies as the new standard for computer chips.
Standard-setting bodies, which work to ensure that devices in widespread use are interoperable, try to avoid giving companies a monopoly unless they agree to modest licensing terms.
Hynix also asked the Supreme Court to take up the issue of whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit had erred in rejecting Hynix's arguments that the Rambus patents were invalid. Hynix argued that the patents in question were invalid, but the court disagreed in a May 2011 ruling.
The Supreme Court declined to hear the case without comment.
Rambus' share price, which can be volatile on court decisions, was unchanged at $7.82 in late morning trade.
There had been a third part of the appeals court ruling, which was not part of the Supreme Court appeal.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit said in a ruling in May that Rambus was wrong to destroy documents but it was not clear the action was so serious that the company should lose its infringement lawsuits.
It left that decision to the U.S. District Court in Delaware, which was hearing a legal fight between Rambus and Micron Technology, the top U.S. maker of memory chips for computers, and the California court hearing a patent suit that Rambus successfully brought against Hynix.
(Reporting By Diane Bartz; Editing by Gerald E. McCormick and Tim Dobbyn)