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Judgment rendered by Tokyo High Court Validating Toyoda Gosei's Patent (decided in Toyoda Gosei's favor)

June 18, 2002

Toyoda Gosei Co., Ltd. (President: Mr. Takashi Matsuura; "Toyoda Gosei") previously brought a suit before the Tokyo High Court (Plaintiff: Toyoda Gosei; Defendant: Commissioner of JPO; Intervenor to assist Defendant: Nichia Corporation) against the JPO's "Ruling to Revoke Patent" decided on February 1, 2000 with respect to the opposition Heisei-9 Opposition No. 76028 (Opponent: Sakae Takagi, SHARP Corporation and Juichiro Koda) concerning the following patent, which is one of the patents relating to a light-emitting gallium nitride-based compound semiconductor device which Toyoda Gosei owns.

Regarding this case, the 18th Civil Division of the Tokyo High Court (Judge Nagai as Presiding Judge) rendered today (June 18, 2002) the judgment to the effect that the JPO's "Ruling to Revoke Patent" is annulled (substantially validating the patent) and thus, our assertion is justified. As a result, this enables Toyoda Gosei to maintain its patent rights and solid patent network.

Please note that since last year, Toyoda Gosei has won six out of seven cases in Toyoda Gosei's favor with such a high probability, as shown in the following table with respect to the lawsuits such as action demanding the annulment of Trial Decision or Ruling to Revoke concerning a gallium nitride-based blue LED in dispute between Toyoda Gosei and Nichia Corporation. In addition, Toyoda Gosei won both the two (2) Patent Infringement Cases in dispute between Toyoda Gosei and Nichia Corporation, at the Tokyo District Court on February 28, 2002. 

  Toyoda Gosei's Patents Nichia Corporation's Patent
Patent Number 2737053 2681733 2658009 2626431 2780691 2778405 2751963
JPO's decision (Date of decision);
(Date of decision on opposition) Invalid
(October 26, 1999)
Invalid
(October 26, 1999)
Invalid
(March 13, 2000)
Invalid
(October 1, 1999)
Invalid
(February 1, 2000)
Valid
(June 16, 2000)
Valid
(December 6, 1999)
Valid
(March 27, 2001)
Tokyo High Court Judgment 
(Date of judgment)
Valid
(March 21, 2001)
Valid
(October 9, 2001)
Invalid
(April 24, 2002)
Valid
(June 18, 2002)
Invalid
(June 13, 2001)
Invalid
(October 2, 2001)
Invalid
(May 14, 2002)
Cases won by Toyoda Gosei (O) O O X O O O O

 

NOTE
 
1. Case No.
  Heisei-12 (Gyo-ke) No. 91
   
2. Subject Patent (Patent No. 2626431)
(1) A nitrogen-Group III compound semiconductor light-emitting device comprising an n-layer of n-type nitrogen-Group III compound semiconductor, and a p-layer of p-type nitrogen-Group III compound semiconductor, wherein
(2) said n-layer has a double structure including an n-layer with comparatively low carrier density and an n+-layer with comparatively high carrier density, in order from the side adjacent to the p-layer; and
(3) said p-layer has a double structure including an Mg doped p-layer with 1) comparatively low carrier density having a hole concentration of 1 x 1014/cm3 or higher and an Mg doped p+-layer with 2) comparatively high carrier density having a hole concentration of 1 x 1016/cm3 or higher, in order from the side adjacent with the n-layer; and
(4) the light-emitting device has the above features.
 
3. Grounds for taking the action demanding annulment of JPO's decision on opposition
 

[Content of JPO's decision on opposition]:

The subject invention could easily be thought of by persons skilled in the art based on the publications.

[Assertion by Toyoda Gosei]

The JPO made a wrong decision on the inventive step and therefore, the patent is valid.

   
4. Judgment of Tokyo High Court
  The Ruling of JPO to the effect that due to no inventive step, the patent is revoked, is erroneous in judging the differences between the subject patent invention as against the inventions stated in the publicly known reference materials and therefore, the JPO's Ruling is annulled.