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Court Transfers Luxpro’s Lawsuit Against Apple

(CN) - A lawsuit accusing Apple Inc. of trying to squeeze out a Taiwanese competitor with abusive litigation tactics will be transferred from Arkansas to California, the 8th Circuit ruled.

The federal appeals court in St. Louis granted Apple's request to have the case transferred to federal court in San Francisco, closer to Apple headquarters.

Luxpro had sued Apple in Arkansas federal court, where it claimed it would get a faster trial. Luxpro's complaint accuses the iPod maker of using courts in Germany and Taiwan to hinder the Taiwanese manufacturer's ability to compete in the market for digital music players.

The 8th Circuit overturned a federal judge's ruling denying Apple's request for a transfer.

Apple had argued that its witnesses and relevant documents are in California, that the allegedly litigious tactics stemmed from its home office in Cupertino, Calif., and that Arkansas had no connection to the dispute.

Luxpro insisted that it should get to pick the forum, and that docket statistics show a trial would be faster in Arkansas.

The three-judge panel agreed with Apple that California is a better forum.

"Neither party maintains its headquarters in Western Arkansas. Neither party identified any witness who resides in Arkansas. And although Apple sells the iPod and other products there, none of the abusive litigation relates to Western Arkansas," the judges wrote.

"The convenience of the parties and witnesses, and the relative interests of justice, favor transfer of this case from the Western District of Arkansas to the Northern District of California."


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