This is what i thought. A jury in Silicon Valley with bias towards Apple(seeing Jobs as nearly a deity) has now been seen by their own words as stepping outside the bounds of not only their instructions but also of their own “expertise”. this jury verdict would be tossed on those grounds alone. Samsung…if their lawyers rate their bar certifications) should also be able to get this tossed on the ignoring of prior art. this verdict was bogus from the beginning in many(but not all areas) and it looks like it was done only to keep Apple’s ‘reality distortion field” intact.
One of the jurors, Manuel Ilagan, said it only took a day to decide that Samsung had wronged Apple. But it could not decide about the prior art issues, which was a corner stone of Samsung’s defence. The jury decided that these “prior art” issues were getting in the way of letting Apple win.
This was where Hogan stepped in and solved the problem with his experience of patents. Before he did so the jury was having trouble believing that there wasn’t something out there before Apple. However Hogan’s answer was to ignore prior art and focus on the patent and whether Samsung had broken it.
As Hogan said to Bloomberg when he got into the case he started looking at the patents as if they were his and how he could defend them. This is not normally the way you try a court case. If that were the case a jury would be asked to imagine they are the victim and you have to come up with a way to lock your accused up.
Ilagan said that it meant that the jury could go faster as all this prior art nonsense was bogging the jury down. The jury’s inhouse experts did not have to decide if Apple invented the rounded rectangle, it just had to work out if Samsung had made a rounded rectangle.
Reuters quoted Hogan as saying that the jury wanted to send a message to Samsung which was not just a slap on the wrist.
“We wanted to make sure it was sufficiently high to be painful, but not unreasonable.”
He claimed that the jurors could decide on these matters because a few had engineering and legal experience, which helped with the complex problems in play.
Now the main problem with his quote was it means that the jury was wilfully ignoring the jury instructions. It was written there that damages are not supposed to punish, merely to compensate for losses. It seems that the jury did not read them because a few of them considered themselves experts.