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Motorola Faces Sanctions for Violating Court Orders During Trade Secrets Trial


— January 8, 2007

Broward, Fla., Circuit Judge Leroy Moe ruled Monday that Motorola willfully violated court orders during a $10 billion trade secrets trial late last year. The ruling could expose the electronics giant to millions in fines, attorney fees and trial costs.

Judge Moe agreed with lawyers for SPS Technologies, which sued Motorola, that during the eight-week trial which ended with a hung jury in November, Motorola placed experts on the stand who previously had read other witnesses’ testimony. That violated the witness sequestration order he imposed at the start of the trial and prejudiced the plaintiff’s case, he said.

But Moe rejected SPS Technologies’ motion for a directed verdict in the trade secrets case.

During Monday’s hearing, Moe said he “almost threw up” during the trial when Motorola’s expert witnesses acknowledged they had read the testimony of plaintiff experts before going on the stand. He said this action was prejudicial and that “sanctions are in order.”

The SPS attorneys asked Moe to fine Motorola $118 million — $100 million in sanctions, $11 million in attorney fees and $7 million in costs. The amount of attorney fees, costs and sanctions to be levied against Motorola will be determined in a later hearing.

Details here from the Daily Business Review via Law.com.


Broward, Fla., Circuit Judge Leroy Moe ruled Monday that Motorola willfully violated court orders during a $10 billion trade secrets trial late last year. The ruling could expose the electronics giant to millions in fines, attorney fees and trial costs.

Judge Moe agreed with lawyers for SPS Technologies, which sued Motorola, that during the eight-week trial which ended with a hung jury in November, Motorola placed experts on the stand who previously had read other witnesses’ testimony. That violated the witness sequestration order he imposed at the start of the trial and prejudiced the plaintiff’s case, he said.

But Moe rejected SPS Technologies’ motion for a directed verdict in the trade secrets case.

During Monday’s hearing, Moe said he “almost threw up” during the trial when Motorola’s expert witnesses acknowledged they had read the testimony of plaintiff experts before going on the stand. He said this action was prejudicial and that “sanctions are in order.”

The SPS attorneys asked Moe to fine Motorola $118 million — $100 million in sanctions, $11 million in attorney fees and $7 million in costs. The amount of attorney fees, costs and sanctions to be levied against Motorola will be determined in a later hearing.

Details here from the Daily Business Review via Law.com.

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