Nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism. Supported by readers.

Donate
Topics

Court sides with St. Jude Medical in unfair competition case

St. Jude Medical says the Massachusetts Superior Court has ruled in its favor in lawsuit between a subsidiary and a supplier. The litigation was filed by LightLab Imaging, which St.

St. Jude Medical says the Massachusetts Superior Court has ruled in its favor in lawsuit between a subsidiary and a supplier.

The litigation was filed by LightLab Imaging, which St. Jude acquired last year, against one of its suppliers, Axson Technology, as well as Volcano Corp., a San Diego company that bought Axson in 2008. Axson and LightLab are both based in Massachusetts.

The court ruled that Volcano acquired Axson as a means of “impeding the growth of a major competitor.” The decision says Volcano orchestrated a scheme to have Axson supply LightLab with a less effective laser, which would “adversely affect the marketability” of LightLab’s Optical Coherence Tomography imaging system, violating the state’s unfair competition laws.

“St. Jude Medical and its LightLab subsidiary are pleased with the Court’s recent ruling,’ Frank Callaghan, president of the St. Jude Medical Cardiovascular Division, said in the company’s statement. “It is gratifying to have both the jury and the Court rule in LightLab’s favor on these important issues.”

Article continues after advertisement

Volcano didn’t issue a statement but did disclose the verdict to investors Monday in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The court ordered Volcano to pay LightLab $400,000 in damages in addition to attorneys’ fees and costs, which were expected to be determined in the court’s final judgement, no later than Feb. 9.

The lawsuit was filed in January 2009. A jury sided with LightLab in February 2010, prompting an appeal from Volcano. A separate lawsuit against Volcano was filed by St. Jude Medical last July alleging patent infringement related to company’s guide wire technology.