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Friday, March 24, 2006
Toshiba Wins Flash Memory Patent Suit Against Hynix

The Japanese unit of South Korea's Hynix Semiconductor Inc. was ordered on Friday to halt its NAND flash memory sales in Japan in a lawsuit brought by Toshiba, the Japanese company said.

Hynix said the ruling would affect only part of its NAND flash memory products and it planned to appeal. Its shares extended losses after the decision by a Tokyo court.

In its ruling, the court also ordered the Hynix unit to pay 7.84 million yen ($66,550) in damages to Toshiba, the world's second-largest maker of NAND-type flash memory chips behind Samsung Electronics.

Toshiba filed the suit against Hynix in the Tokyo District Court in 2004 for what it said was the infringement of patents on NAND-type flash memory chips, which are seeing explosive growth as they are widely used in digital cameras and portable music players such as Apple Computer Inc's iPod nano.

The court ruling is Hynix's second major setback in Japan so far this year.

Japan in January imposed a 27.2 percent duty on DRAM imports from the South Korean chip maker.

The decision came after Elpida Memory Inc. and the Japan unit of Micron Technology Inc. asked the Japanese government in 2004 to impose duties on Hynix's DRAM imports, saying they believed Hynix had received subsidies from the South Korean government.

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