The U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) has voted to institute an investigation of
certain MLC flash memory devices and products containing same. The products at issue in this
investigation are multi-level cell NAND flash memory chips that are incorporated into various
consumer electronic products such as laptop computers, cell phones, and MP3 players that are
imported into the United States.
The investigation is based on a complaint filed by BTG International, Inc., of West Conshohocken, PA, on July 27, 2009. The complaint alleges violations of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 in the importation into the United States and sale of certain MLC flash memory devices and products containing same that infringe patents asserted by BTG International. The complainant requests that the USITC issue an exclusion order and a cease and desist order.
The USITC has identified the following respondents in this investigation:
Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., of South Korea;
Samsung Electronics America, Inc., of Ridgefield Park, NJ;
Samsung Semiconductor, Inc., of San Jose, CA;
Samsung Telecommunications America, LLC, of Richardson, TX;
Apple, Inc., of Cupertino, CA;
ASUStek Computer, Inc., of Taiwan;
ASUS Computer International of Fremont, CA;
Dell, Inc., of Round Rock, TX;
Lenovo Group Limited of Hong Kong;
Lenovo (United States) Inc. of Morrisville, NC;
PNY Technologies, Inc., of Parsippany, NJ;
Research in Motion, Ltd., of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada;
Research in Motion Corporation of Irving, TX;
Sony Corporation of Japan;
Sony Electronics, Inc., of San Diego, CA; and
Transcend Information, Inc., of Taiwan.
By instituting this investigation (337-TA-683), the USITC has not yet made any decision on the merits of the case. The USITC's Chief Administrative Law Judge will assign the case to one of the USITC's six administrative law judges (ALJ), who will schedule and hold an evidentiary hearing. The ALJ will make an initial determination as to whether there is a violation of section 337; that initial determination is subject to review by the Commission.
The USITC will make a final determination in the investigation at the earliest practicable time. Within 45 days after institution of the investigation, the USITC will set a target date for completing the investigation. USITC remedial orders in section 337 cases are effective when issued and become final 60 days after issuance unless disapproved for policy reasons by the U.S. Trade Representative within that 60-day period.