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Cognex Re-Files Lawsuit Against Lemelson Partnership
Oct 1999
NATICK, Mass., Oct. 1 -- Cognex Corp. has re-filed its lawsuit against the Lemelson Medical, Educational & Research Foundation Limited Partnership. The venue for the case has changed to the US District Court in Reno, Nev., in the wake of US District Court Judge Nathaniel M. Gorton's decision that the Lemelson Partnership could not be sued in Massachusetts due to insufficient business connections in the state. Massachusetts was the site of the original September 1998 filing of Cognex's lawsuit.
Cognex's complaint seeks a declaratory judgement ruling that a number of patents claimed by the Partnership to cover machine vision are invalid and/or unenforceable. Cognex also asserts that neither it nor any users of its products infringe on the patents in question; the late Jerome H. Lemelson assigned the patents to the Partnership.
It is important to understand that Judge Gorton's decision is strictly procedural and has no bearing on the merits of the case, said Dr. Robert J. Shillman, Cognex's chairman, CEO, and president. The basis of our complaint remains unchanged -- that the Lemelson Partnership's machine vision patents are invalid and are unenforceable against either Cognex or our customers, and that our technology does not infringe any valid Lemelson patent. This lawsuit is about more than just protecting the interests of our company; it is also about protecting our customers and manufacturers worldwide who use our products, from both the current and future threat of patent infringement litigation by the Lemelson Partnership.

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