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Jazz Photo Corp. v. United States Int'l Trade Comm.
Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
264 F.3d 1094 (2001)
Fuji (plaintiff) charged that Jazz Photo (defendant/appellant) and others were infringing several patents to single-use cameras (by refurbishing them for reuse abroad), bringing the case before the United States International Trade Commission (appellee), based on the defendants’ importing of the patented products. Under Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. §1337), items that infringe a valid United States patent cannot be imported into the country, and the International Trade Commission hears complaints of patent holders who allege that goods being imported violate their patents, such as in the present case. However, instead of importing new articles, Jazz Photo and the defendants were charged with importing reconstructed patented cameras. Reconstruction is prohibited under patent law, as opposed to repairing patented goods, which is permissible. The parties agreed that the refurbished cameras being imported contained all of the claim limitations in the patents, and the dispute rested on whether the defendants’ activities constituted repair or reconstruction. After the Commission held that the patents were being infringed, it issued a cease and desist order against the defendants, as a result of which Jazz Photo appealed to the Court of Appeals.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Newman, J.)
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