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Google: Sun offered to license Java for $100M

By James Niccolai
July 22, 2011 01:58 AM ET

"There's nothing in there but a guy who's being paid $700 an hour who comes up with $6 billion. Come on," Alsup said, after making Oracle tell the court how much its expert gets paid.

Steven Holtzman, an attorney for Oracle, told the judge Oracle has done enough to show that its patent claims support its request for so-called "entire market" damages.

"You can't even tell me now which claims you're going to assert at trial," Alsup shot back, "and you want me to gamble that whatever you decide on is going to meet the entire market rule? That is crazy and you're not going to get away with that."

Alsup has been pressuring Oracle to reduce the claims it will pursue at trial. It started with 132 and narrowed it this month to 50. The judge has suggested it should be two or three to avoid overwhelming the jury.

Oracle has "Google documents" which will show that it wilfully infringed Sun's patents, Holtzman said, adding that he didn't want to discuss them at a "public hearing."

That also drew Alsup's wrath.

"You lawyers are not going to handcuff the public from knowing what goes on in this federal district court," he snapped. "This is not a wholly-owned subsidiary of Oracle Corporation. "

"If Google has a memo in their files saying 'we're about to willingly infringe,' there's no way I'm going to keep that secret from the public."

Holtzman said Oracle has an e-mail from a Google executive to Rubin, the head of Google's Android division, which he said shows that Google recognized it needed a license for Java.

He read part of the email in court: "What we've actually been asked to do by Larry and Sergey is to investigate what technology alternatives exist to Java for Android and Chrome," the Google executive wrote, referring to founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin. "We've been over a hundred of these and think they all suck. We conclude that we need to negotiate a license for Java."

"That's a pretty good document for you," Alsup said. "That ought to be big for you at trial."

Later he asked Google's attorney: "What do you make of this memo ... to Andy Rubin? He'll be on the hot seat at trial and have to explain this email.... I agree with you it doesn't [mention] patents, but don't you think a good lawyer will convince a jury that it [refers to] a license for patents? How do you get around that?"

"You're going to be on the losing end of this document with Andy Rubin on the stand. You think about that," Alsup continued. "And I want to say this: Wilful infringement is final. There are profound implications of a permanent injunction. I'm not saying there is wilful infringement, but that is a serious factor when you're considering an injunction."

Reprinted with permission from Story copyright 2014 International Data Group. All rights reserved.
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