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Federal Circuit Reverses $78.9 Million Verdict Against DirecTV

WASHINGTON (CN) - The Federal Circuit overturned a $78.9 million verdict against DirecTV in a patent dispute with California-based Finisar Corp. over broadcasting technology.

Finisar's patent covers a system for broadcasting video and audio programs through high-speed satellite or cable links.

A jury in 2006 concluded that DirecTV had willfully infringed on seven patent claims and awarded Finisar $78.9 million as "reasonable royalty damages."

In vacating the award, the federal appeals court said the district court had misinterpreted "vital terms" in each of the patent claims.

The appellate judges vacated and remanded with instructions for the lower court to re-evaluate infringement and validity for six of the claims.

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