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Motorola Wins Long-Running Aussie Copyright Battle

The Federal Court of Australia has ruled in favour of Motorola Solutions in its long-running copyright and patent infringement case against a Chinese radio maker.

The Court found that Hytera Communications, who manufacture radio systems and transceivers, repeatedly infringed Motorola’s copyright and patent rights.

The court determined that 22 separate portable radio products, two mobile models, and four repeaters, on sale in Australia, infringed Motorola Solutions’ Australian patent.

It also found that Hytera unlawfully stole source code owned by Motorola Solutions, which was copied into Hyteria’s DMR equipment. This “constituted a substantial industrial theft” according to the Court.

The Court awarded a permanent restraint of trade against Hytera for the infringing products, as well as yet-to-be-determined damages for the continued breach.

Similar rulings have been made in the US and Germany.

The claim, made back in 2017, was that Hytera digital mobile radios sold in Australia breached at least three patents held by Motorola Solutions.

“As the world’s leading provider of two-way radio equipment and systems, we are committed to vigorously enforcing our valuable intellectual property rights on behalf of our customers, shareholders, employees, partners and other stakeholders,” Motorola Solutions’ chief administrative officer, Mark Hacker, said at the time.

“This filing in the Federal Court of Australia is a continuation of our global efforts to safeguard Motorola Solutions’ proven record of technological innovation and our extensive portfolio of more than 4,000 patents.

“We are confident in the merits of each case and will continue to pursue legal remedies to stop Hytera’s infringing behavior.”

A similar filing by Motorola in Illinois says, “Unlike Motorola, Hytera has not invested the time, creative effort, or expense of the extensive research necessary to produce truly innovative technologies and products.”

“Hytera knew that its analog radio products faced extinction, and that it could not hope to develop its own digital two-way radios in time to save its ailing business.”

It claimed ex-employees lured from Motorola to Hytera stole “thousands of confidential technical documents in the weeks prior to their departures”.

Motorola Australia is happy with the ruling.

“We are pleased the Australian Federal Court recognises that Hytera unlawfully copied our proprietary source code and is infringing our patent rights,” Motorola Solutions general counsel and chief administrative officer Mark Hacker said.

“Since we commenced our global litigation campaign to hold Hytera accountable, a federal jury in the United States, the U.S International Trade Commission, courts in Germany and now Australia have all ruled in our favour.

“The evidence of Hytera’s egregious theft and blatant infringement of our patents, trade secrets and copyrights is overwhelming and the victory further validates our efforts to protect our intellectual property for the benefit of our industry, customers, channel and distribution partners, shareholders and other stakeholders.”

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