Judge dispenses with motion with a terse "I think that topic has been fully briefed"
Hogan. Photo: Jim Gensheimer for the Mercury News
FORTUNE -- To read the commentary in Groklaw, you might have thought that Velvin Hogan's role as foreman of the jury that slapped Samsung with $1.05 billion in damages for infringing Apple's (AAPL) iPhone patents was the biggest miscarriage of justice since Gore v. Bush.
Not only did the jury Hogan led overstep its bounds and act like "little patent fascists," in the words of Groklaw's Pamela Jones, but Hogan failed to mention all manner of pertinent issues in voir dire, from a 20-year-old patent lawsuit that bankrupted him to a house he purchased under mysterious circumstances. "One has to wonder," Jones concludes in support of Samsung's motion for a new trial, "if he always tells the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth... My bogometer is ringing off the wall."
If Groklaw's readers were expecting Samsung's charge of jury misconduct to be the dramatic highlight of Thursday's big post-trial hearing, they will be disappointed.
The issue did come up, but it was dispensed with, according to The Verge's excellent live blog, in 83 seconds.
- 4:00:55 PM PST Jury foreman Velvin Hogan gets his first mention.
- 4:01:44 PM PST Apple informed Samsung when it knew about the Seagate lawsuit he'd been part of, so Samsung's motion is moot.
- 4:01:52 PM PST And like that, we've moved on from Hogan.
- 4:02:18 PM PST "I think that topic has been fully briefed," [Judge Lucy] Koh said.
UPDATE: Spoke too soon. John Quinn, representing Samsung, returned to Hogan for the last 17:42 minutes of the hearing. I'll leave it to the reader to judge whether he made any progress with Lucy Koh. The Verge's live blog:
- 4:45:06 PM PST We haven't heard from John Quinn. That just changed. He wants to bring up Velvin Hogan even though Koh dismissed the issue earlier.
- 4:46:04 PM PST Quinn says Hogan was dishonest, and wanted to be on the jury.
- 4:46:51 PM PST He was inconsistent when explaining why he didn't reveal the Seagate lawsuit, Quinn says. "He also gave an inconsistent explanation that he hadn't specifically been asked by Your Honor to explain every case he'd been involved in."
- 4:47:02 PM PST "He was deliberately dishonest. We know that."
- 4:47:50 PM PST Quinn is going through the history of Samsung's deal with Seagate. Koh has her head down, reading the brief no doubt... but she hasn't cut Quinn off yet.
- 4:48:30 PM PST Judge Koh finally looks up at Quinn, and she's scowling. She looks back down.
- 4:48:42 PM PST Quinn: "He told the reporters what he would not tell this court."
- 4:49:05 PM PST "I think we have a case here that he should have been excused for cause."
- 4:49:21 PM PST "This is a juror that wanted to be on the jury."
- 4:50:00 PM PST Quinn quotes precedent that says a juror that isn't indifferent is a juror "in name only."
- 4:51:20 PM PST "We've all seen in the press reports how initially the jury was deadlocked, perhaps favoring Samsung, but because he was involved — if he hadn't been involved, the verdict may have been different."
- 4:52:11 PM PST Koh: "Let me ask a question. Mr. Hogan disclosed he worked for Seagate. Why didn't you ask him a question during voir dire?"
- 4:52:46 PM PST Quinn says they would have followed up on the lawsuit if they'd known about it.
- 4:53:27 PM PST (Apple, of course, has already stated in its briefing that Samsung should have asked its questions then, during jury selection, and can't complain now.)
- 4:53:50 PM PST "He knew about the relationship between Seagate and Samsung and he didn't bring it up because he wanted to be on the jury."
- 4:54:27 PM PST "This is a man who says he wanted to get on the jury… He has told members of the press that this was the most important moment of his life."
- 4:54:33 PM PST "The court needs to hold a hearing here."
- 4:54:53 PM PST Quinn is asking for two things: Hogan be brought in for questioning.
- 4:55:06 PM PST And the other jurors be brought in as well so they can be asked about his influence on them.
- 4:55:31 PM PST Koh gives a curt thank you. William Lee for Apple comes up, and she warns him: "very briefly."
- 4:56:27 PM PST Lee categorically denies that Hogan was dishonest in the way Samsung is arguing. "They have it precisely wrong on all three counts."
- 4:57:32 PM PST "They're claiming that Mr. Hogan lied about an event that occurred 19 years ago... and it was his goal in life to harm" the Seagate and Samsung deal.
- 4:57:39 PM PST Snickers in the courtroom.
- 4:58:54 PM PST "I think it's outrageous that he's being called a liar."
- 5:01:01 PM PST Quinn responds, saying it is irrelevant that Hogan revealed his other lawsuit. "This is a juror that had an agenda and frankly it's unfortunate that he got on the jury. I take no pleasure, as someone that works with juries, to say he engaged in juror misconduct... and it made a difference."
- 5:02:29 PM PST McElhinny: "Mr. Hogan cannot defend himself.... This motion was an unprofessional motion in a case in which no stone is left unturned."
- 5:02:48 PM PST Koh thanks everyone. "I will try to get these orders out as soon as I can."