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Judge Stark rules on motions in limine

In advance of the pre-trial conference in Greatbatch Ltd. v. AVX Corporation, et al., C.A. No. 13-723-LPS, and in addition to resolving a number of rulings regarding disputes over the pre-trial order and trial logistics, Chief Judge Leonard P. Stark ruled on the parties’ motions in limine.  Greatbatch Ltd. v. AVX Corporation, et al., C.A. No. 13-723-LPS (D. Del. July 20, 2017).  The Court first granted Plaintiff’s motion to preclude Defendants from presenting the testimony of a certain witness by deposition.  This witness had been deposed by Plaintiff, but prior to trial Defendants had terminated the relationship with the witness, he was unavailable, and Defendants never had an opportunity to question the witness as to the circumstances of his termination, “which appears to have been related to conduct that may be probative of issues that are the subject of the forthcoming trial.” Id. at 3-4.  To allow the deposition testimony “would leave [Plaintiff] with no fair opportunity to allow the jury to evaluate [his] credibility.” Id. at 4.

The Court granted Defendants’ motion to preclude “evidence or argument concerning indemnification or damages” because damages and indirect infringement were not at issue in the upcoming trial, and the evidence’s minimal probative value was thus outweighed by the risk of juror confusion and unfair prejudice. Id. at 6.  The Court also granted Defendants’ motion to preclude evidence or argument of “infringement or copying of patents or by product not at issue at the forthcoming trial, concluding that “[s]uch evidence is not relevant [infringement]. There is no need for the jury to learn of the fact that the 2016 trial occurred nor its outcome. Even were there some relevance to the evidence at issue in this motion, it would be substantially outweighed by the risk of unfair prejudice to [Defendants], particularly as it would create the possibility of the August 2017 jury deferring to the conclusion of the January 2016 jury that AVX is an infringer, and of confusing the jury.” Id. at 6-7.  On the other hand, the Court would later consider Plaintiff’s arguments for why the same evidence should be admitted during the willfulness portion of the trial, should that phase be necessary. Id. at 7 n.5.

The Court also denied several of the parties’ motions to preclude evidence that it concluded was relevant to infringement, finding that the evidence’s probative value was not outweighed by the potential for prejudice or juror confusion. See id. at 5-7.

Greatbatch Ltd. v. AVX Corporation, et al., C.A. No. 13-723-LPS (D. Del. July 20, 2017)

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