Juniper, Palo Alto Legal Dispute Ends in MistrialJuniper, Palo Alto Legal Dispute Ends in Mistrial
The court trial in the patent dispute between Juniper Networks and Palo Alto Networks is over. And the winner is ... nobody, actually. The jury could not reach a verdict, and U.S. District Judge Sue L. Robinson declared a mistrial.
March 11, 2014
The court trial in the patent dispute between Juniper Networks (JNPR) and Palo Alto Networks (PANW) is over. And the winner is … nobody, actually. The jury could not reach a verdict, and U.S. District Judge Sue L. Robinson declared a mistrial.
The two networking vendors have been fighting since 2011 when Juniper filed a lawsuit against Palo Alto over patent infringement. When Robinson pushed the legal battle on to trial last month, it seemed likely that a winner would emerge, but after two weeks of trial and six hours of deliberation, the jury was still no closer to settling the case.
The patent infringement suit goes back to Palo Alto Networks’ formation by a bunch of former Juniper employees. According to Juniper, Palo Alto is using some of its patents without permission, and Juniper executives had hoped Robinson would simply hand down a summary judgment last month. Not so, of course.
Now with the mistrial verdict (if you can call it that), Juniper released this statement: “Juniper Networks sued Palo Alto Networks in December 2011 on seven patents related to network security. Oral arguments concluded on March 4 on three of the patents. The jury has been unable to unanimously reach a verdict and therefore the court declared a mistrial today. Juniper brought the suit in order to protect our intellectual property and investment in innovation; while we wish this jury had been able to reach a unanimous conclusion, we look forward to presenting our case to a new jury in the near future.”
The indication is clear that Juniper plans to continue fighting this battle in the courts.
Palo Alto Networks also released a statement, with president and CEO Mark McLaughlin commenting, “From the outset, we said we would vigorously defend the company against Juniper’s lawsuit. We continue to stand by our position that we do not infringe on their patents and are committed to delivering innovation and providing the network security market with disruptive technologies.”
The trial began Feb. 24 and concluded March 4. Both companies released their statements at the end of last week.
There currently is no news on when the new trial will be set.
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