Intel asks nicely for antitrust case to be dropped

M’Learned friends working on behalf of Intel have asked a federal judge, in a hearing in Delaware,  to dump an antitrust lawsuit filed against the computer chip maker by New York state’s attorney general.

New York sued Chipzilla claiming that Intel paid billions of dollars in kickbacks to computer makers in order to dominate the market for microprocessors, and that it punished manufacturers who did too much business with its rivals, such as AMD.

The case for the State is that the scheme weakened AMD and allowed Intel to charge more for its chips than it could have otherwise. Higher prices were passed onto computer purchasers.

While Intel has not got into the fact that the State has a fair bit of evidence, it has asked US District Judge Leonard Stark to dismiss claims the attorney general’s office made on behalf of individuals and some 4,000 public entities other than the state, because New York has not got the right to bring such claims.

According to the Wall Street Journal, New York filed its claims on behalf of consumers under a law that allows the awarding of triple damages and under common law doctrine allowing the state to act in a “parental” role. So, if the City is in bed at the right time every night and does its homework then New York is allowed to sue on its behalf.

It also said that purchases before November 2006 should not be taken into account as Delaware’s three-year time restriction, not New York’s longer statute of limitations, should apply.

Intel attorneys claim that New York law allows the state to seek only injunctions and civil penalties when they are asked. So far New York had not provided any evidence to prove that any public entities wanted to sue Chipzilla.

Stark said he will think about it. The trial in the case is set to begin February 14.