ITC To Investigate Six More Rothschild Accused Infringers


In a previous post, I wrote about the U.S. International Trade Commission’s (ITC) investigation of a host of major electronics companies accused of infringing a seminal LED patent owned by Gertrude Neumark Rothschild.

The ITC recently began investigating six more companies, based in China and Taiwan, in response to another complaint by the retired Columbia University Professor.  The Notice of Investigation names Chi Mei Lighting Technology Corp., Tekcore Co. Ltd., Toyolite Technologies Corp., Tyntek Corp., Visual Photonics Epitaxy Co. and Xiamen Sanan Optoelectronics Technology.

The ITC is a federal agency that investigates trade and importation issues, including conducting quasi-judicial proceedings involving alleged infringement of intellectual property rights by importation of accused products pursuant to 19 U.S.C. § 1337.  It is a popular forum for patentees (though only injunctive relief is available, not monetary damages) because the proceedings progress much faster than those in the federal courts.

According to the Notice, the ITC will determine whether Section 1337 is violated by:

the importation into the United States, the sale for importation, or the sale within the United States after importation of certain light emitting diode chips, laser diode chips or products containing same that infringe one or more of claims 10, 12, 3, and 16 of U.S. Patent No. 5,252,499

The asserted patent is directed to methods of making LEDs capable of emitting short wavelength (green or blue) light.  The patent addresses the problem of “doping” wide band gap semiconductor materials, an essential step in creating adequate conductance for the materials to function as LEDs.  Doping means adding impurities to a semiconductor to increase the number of free charge carriers.

Undoubtedly, Rothschild hopes to continue her recent success enforcing her LED patents.  She has been aggressively litigating her patents and several companies have taken licenses, including Philips Lumileds, Epistar, Sony, Sanyo and others.

Eric Lane Avatar

Eric Lane

Eric Lane, the founder and principal of Green Patent Law, is an intellectual property lawyer and registered U.S. patent attorney in New York and is a member of the bar in New York and California. Eric has more than two decades of experience working with wind, solar PV, CSP, biofuels, and geothermal, energy storage technologies, carbon capture and sequestration, medical devices, data communications, mechanical, chemical, internet and software.