Cree cites additional LED patents in BridgeLux dispute

Cree has stepped up its patent dispute against rival chip manufacturer BridgeLux by introducing two additional patents into its complaint.

Cree has expanded its patent litigation against BridgeLux (formerly eLite Optoelectronics) with claims of infringement of US patent nos. 6,614,056 ("the '056 patent") and 6,885,036 ("the '036 patent").

These claims are in addition to the previously filed claims based on Cree's US patent no. 6,657,236 as well as US patent no. 5,686,738 (see Cree sues BridgeLux for patent infringement (September 2006)).

After Cree's initial action in September 2006, BridgeLux responded in October with a motion to dismiss the initial Cree lawsuit, and also filed suit against Cree for infringement of US patent number 6,869,812 (see BridgeLux extends patent dispute with Cree (October 2006)).

Cree's '056 and '036 patents, which are both entitled "Scalable LED With Improved Current Spreading Structures," relate to contact structures in LEDs with improved current spreading.

Cree added these patents in a counterclaim responding to BridgeLux's October 2006 complaint filed in the U. S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.

In Cree's counterclaim, in addition to seeking an injunction to stop BridgeLux's on-going infringement, Cree has also requested a declaration that BridgeLux's sole patent-at-issue (no. 6,869,812) is invalid over Cree's earlier '056 and '036 patents.

The counterclaim also seeks a declaration that BridgeLux's patent is not infringed and unenforceable due to fraud and/or inequitable conduct committed before the Patent Office. A trial date has yet to be set.

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