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Old 03-05-2006, 11:52 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by jem
You have missed my point. Judge Spencer has adopted the speedy justice principle for purposes of civil trials in the Virginia "Rocket Docket." In this case, it was inappropriate because of the mismatched timing with the Patent Office.
Maybe I've missed your point, maybe not. The "Rocket Docket" has nothing to do with the Constitution, which is what is generally meant by "speedy justice," which (like many constitutional principles) is often tossed about by laypeople in casual conversation. The "Rocket Docket" is nothing more than an administrative expedient to keep cases like this one moving along.

I will concede that I find it odd that Spencer didn't stay proceedings pending the outcome of the reexam, especially considering that the legal remedy (money damages) would have been sufficient in this case (that is, NTP didn't need an injunction to be made whole; it simply used the threat of an injunction to hold RIM hostage to a higher settlement value). But it's just that--odd--not improper, and certainly no reason to call for an impeachment.

As to the jury verdict: yes, it is indeed premised on the validity of the patents. Fortunately for NTP, there is a final court judgment that the patents are valid. Nothing can ever change that. All that can happen is the USPTO can cut off NTP's rights going forwards; they cannot change the past.