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Nortel Files Lawsuit Against Vonage
[December 15, 2007]

Nortel Files Lawsuit Against Vonage

(AP) Nortel (News - Alert) Files Lawsuit Against Vonage
Nortel Networks Corp., the Canadian maker of telecom equipment, filed a lawsuit on Friday against Vonage -- claiming that it violated nine patents related to Internet phone services and related features such as 911 and 411 calling and click to call.

Nortel spokesman Mohammed Nakhooda said the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Delaware, countered claims made by Vonage (News - Alert) that Nortel had violated three of its patents.

Vonage Holdings Corp., Holmdel, N.J., was dragged into the legal battle after it acquired three patents from Digital Packet Licensing last year, according to Vonage spokesman Charles Sahner.

DPL had filed a suit against Nortel in 2004 alleging violation of those three patents, so Vonage continued with the lawsuit.

"Litigation is ongoing, and both parties have filed -- and will continue to file -- papers supporting their case," Sahner said.

On the possibility of a settlement, he said: "We always prefer to settle disputes amicably whenever possible."

In this particular case, Vonage is pursuing the legal action, rather than getting sued. Sahner said Nortel's countersuit was a defensive move.

In October, Vonage settled the last of its lawsuits with the major U.S. telecom companies. Throughout the year, it had fended off legal actions by Verizon Communications Inc., AT&T Inc, and Sprint Nextel (News - Alert) Corp. Industry observers had written off the company in the summer as its legal problems mounted.

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