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Traxcell Technologies, LLC v. Huawei Technologies USA Inc.

United States District Court, E.D. Texas, Marshall Division

December 21, 2017




         The defendants have each moved for emergency relief, requesting that the Court again strike Traxcell's infringement contentions and impose sanctions against Traxcell for failure to comply with Local Patent Rule 3-1. See Dkt. Nos. 114, 118, 120, and 122. The emergency motions are granted for the following reasons, and additional relief is ordered as set forth below.


         On January 12, 2017, Traxcell filed complaints against Alcatel-Lucent, Huawei, Nokia, Motorola Solutions, and Samsung. See Case Nos. 2:17-cv-00041, -42, -43, -44, -45. Traxcell's original complaints alleged infringement of two patents that generally relate to systems and methods involving the interaction between a mobile device and a wireless network. The lawsuit against Motorola Solutions has since been dismissed with prejudice, pursuant to an unopposed motion filed by Traxcell. See Case No. 2:17-cv-00042, Dkt. Nos. 93 and 97. The cases against the Alcatel-Lucent, Huawei, Nokia, and Samsung remain pending.

         Traxcell's original complaint against Alcatel-Lucent alleged infringement of U.S. Patent Nos. 9, 510, 320 and 8, 977, 284. Case No. 2:17-cv-00041, Compl. ¶¶ 6-15, Dkt. No. 1. In response to a motion to dismiss filed by Alcatel-Lucent on April 24, 2017, id., Dkt. No. 12, Traxcell filed an amended complaint on May 2, 2017, id., Dkt. No. 15. In addition to alleging infringement of the '320 and '284 patents, the amended complaint alleges that Alcatel-Lucent infringes a third patent, U.S. Patent No. 9, 642, 024. Id. ¶¶ 16-21, Dkt. No. 15.

         On June 1, 2017, Alcatel-Lucent filed a motion to dismiss the amended complaint under Rules 12(b)(6) and Rule 12(b)(3), contending both that Traxcell's amended complaint fails to state a claim and that venue is improper. Id., Dkt. No. 19. Although Alcatel-Lucent's motion remains pending, the Court entered an order on November 13, 2017, permitting Traxcell to conduct venue-related discovery and requiring Traxcell to update its response regarding whether venue was proper no later fifteen days after Alcatel-Lucent's venue-related discovery responses. Id., Dkt. No. 28. There has been no further activity on the docket regarding the venue dispute between Traxcell and Alcatel-Lucent.

         The '024 patent was added into the cases against Huawei and Nokia through a similar course of events. After Huawei answered the complaint, see Case No. 2:17-cv-00042, Dkt. No. 8, Traxcell amended the complaint against Huawei to add allegations regarding infringement of the '024 patent, id., Dkt. No. 12. Traxcell similarly added the '024 patent into the case against Nokia in May of 2017. See id., Dkt. No. 10.

         In the lawsuit against Samsung, Traxcell's amended complaint alleges infringement of the two patents asserted in the original complaint, i.e., the '320 and '284 patents, in addition to alleging infringement of U.S. Patent Nos. 9, 549, 388. See Case No. 2:17-cv-0045, Dkt. No. 15. Three days after filing the amended complaint against Samsung, Traxcell filed an unopposed motion to dismiss the claim that Samsung is infringing the '388 patent without prejudice, and that motion was granted. See id., Dkt. Nos. 17 and 19. Traxcell then filed another amended complaint alleging infringement of the '320 and '284 patents, in addition to alleging infringement of the '024 patent. See id., Dkt. No. 21.

         On June 6, 2017, the Court entered an order consolidating the cases into a lead case. See Case No. 2:17-cv-00042 (“Lead Case”), Dkt. No. 15. On June 15, 2017, the Court entered a notice on the docket indicating that a scheduling conference would be held on June 18, 2017. See id., Dkt. No. 19. Under the local patent rules, a party claiming patent infringement must serve a “Disclosure of Asserted Claims and Infringement Contentions” no later than ten days before the scheduling conference. Local Patent Rule 3-1. The rule governing infringement contentions requires a party claiming infringement to satisfy four pertinent requirements-the following disclosures must be timely made:

(a) Each claim of each patent in suit that is allegedly infringed by each opposing party;
(b) Separately for each asserted claim, each accused apparatus, product, device, process, method, act, or other instrumentality (“Accused Instrumentality”) of each opposing party of which the party is aware. This identification shall be as specific as possible. Each product, device, and apparatus must be identified by name or model number, if known. Each method or process must be identified by name, if known, or by any product, device, or apparatus which, when used, allegedly results in the practice of the claimed method or process;
(c) A chart identifying specifically where each element of each asserted claim is found within each Accused Instrumentality, including for each element that such party contends is governed by 35 U.S.C. § 112(6), the identity of the structure(s), act(s), or material(s) in the Accused Instrumentality that performs the claimed function; and
(d) Whether each element of each asserted claim is claimed to be literally present or present under the doctrine of equivalents in the Accused Instrumentality;

Id. at 3-1(a)-(d). Traxcell was obliged to comply with these requirements no later than June 7, 2017, and Traxcell had nearly five months to prepare infringement contentions ...

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