[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 161 (Friday, August 21, 2009)]
[Pages 42325-42326]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-20106]



[Inv. No. 337-TA-565]

In the Matter of Certain Ink Cartridges and Components Thereof; 
Consolidated Enforcement Proceeding and Enforcement Proceeding II; 
Notice of Commission Determinations on Civil Penalties; Termination of 
Enforcement Proceedings

AGENCY: U.S. International Trade Commission.

ACTION: Notice.


SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that the U.S. International Trade 
Commission has determined to levy civil penalties in the above-
captioned proceeding after finding violations of cease and desist 
orders and a consent order issued in the original investigation. The 
Commission has terminated the proceedings.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Michael Haldenstein, Office of the 
General Counsel, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street, 
SW., Washington, DC 20436, telephone (202) 205-3041. Copies of all 
nonconfidential documents filed in connection with this investigation 
are or will be available for inspection during official business hours 
(8:45 a.m. to 5:15 p.m.) in the Office of the Secretary, U.S. 
International Trade Commission, 500 E Street, SW., Washington, DC 
20436, telephone 202-205-2000. General information concerning the 
Commission may also be obtained by accessing its Internet server 
(http://www.usitc.gov). The public record for this investigation may be 
viewed on the Commission's electronic docket (EDIS) at http://edis.usitc.gov/. Hearing-impaired persons are advised that information 
on the matter can be obtained by contacting the Commission's TDD 
terminal on 202-205-1810.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Commission instituted the underlying 
investigation in this matter on March 23, 2006, based on a complaint 
filed by Epson Portland, Inc. of Oregon; Epson America, Inc. of 
California; and Seiko Epson Corporation of Japan (collectively, 
``Epson''). 71 FR 14720 (March 23, 2006). The complaint, as amended, 
alleged violations of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 (``section 
337'') in the importation into the United States, the sale for 
importation, and the sale within the United States after importation of 
certain ink cartridges and components thereof by reason of infringement 
of claim 7 of U.S. Patent No. 5,615,957; claims 18, 81, 93, 149, 164, 
and 165 of U.S. Patent No. 5,622,439; claims 83 and 84 of U.S. Patent 
No. 5,158,377; claims 19 and 20 of U.S. Patent No. 5,221,148; claims 
29, 31, 34, and 38 of U.S. Patent No. 5,156,472; claim 1 of U.S. Patent 
No. 5,488,401; claims 1-3 and 9 of U.S. Patent No. 6,502,917; claims 1, 
31, and 34 of U.S. Patent No. 6,550,902; claims 1, 10, and 14 of U.S. 
Patent No. 6,955,422; claim 1 of U.S. Patent No. 7,008,053; and claims 
21, 45, 53, and 54 of U. S. Patent No. 7,011,397. The complaint further 
alleged that an industry in the United States exists as required by 
subsection (a)(2) of section 337. The complainants requested that the 
Commission issue a general exclusion order and cease and desist orders. 
The Commission named as respondents 24 companies located in China, 
Germany, Hong Kong, Korea, and the United States. Several respondents 
were terminated from the investigation on the basis of settlement 
agreements or consent orders or were found in default.
    On October 19, 2007, after review of the ALJ's final ID, the 
Commission made its final determination in the investigation, finding a 
violation of section 337. The Commission issued a general exclusion 
order, a limited exclusion order, and cease and desist orders directed 
to several domestic respondents. The Commission also determined that 
the public interest factors enumerated in 19 U.S.C. 1337(d), (f), and 
(g) did not preclude issuance of the aforementioned remedial orders, 
and that the bond during the Presidential period of review would be 
$13.60 per cartridge for covered ink cartridges. Certain respondents 
appealed the Commission's final determination to the United States 
Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (``Federal Circuit''). On 
January 13, 2009, the Federal Circuit affirmed the Commission's final 
determination without opinion pursuant to Fed. Cir. R. 36. Ninestar 
Technology Co. et al. v. International Trade Commission, Appeal No. 
    On February 8, 2008, Epson filed two complaints for enforcement of 
the Commission's orders pursuant to Commission rule 210.75. Epson 
proposed that the Commission name five respondents as enforcement 
respondents. On May 1, 2008, the Commission determined that the 
criteria for institution of enforcement proceedings were satisfied and 
instituted consolidated enforcement proceedings, naming the five 
following proposed respondents as enforcement respondents: Ninestar 
Technology Co., Ltd.; Ninestar Technology Company, Ltd.; Town Sky Inc. 
(collectively, the

[[Page 42326]]

``Ninestar Respondents''), as well as Mipo America Ltd. (``Mipo 
America'') and Mipo International, Ltd (collectively, the ``Mipo 
Respondents''). On March 18, 2008, Epson filed a third enforcement 
complaint against two proposed respondents: Ribbon Tree USA, Inc. (dba 
Cana-Pacific Ribbons) and Apex Distributing Inc.(collectively, the 
``Apex Respondents''). On June 23, 2008, the Commission determined that 
the criteria for institution of enforcement proceedings were satisfied 
and instituted another formal enforcement proceeding and named the two 
proposed respondents as the enforcement respondents. On September 18, 
2008, the ALJ issued Order No. 37, consolidating the two proceedings.
    On April 17, 2009, the ALJ issued his Enforcement Initial 
Determination (EID) in which he determined that there have been 
violations of the Commission's cease and desist orders and consent 
order and recommended that the Commission impose civil penalties for 
such violations. The Ninestar Respondents filed a timely petition for 
review. The Commission considered the EID, the petition for review, the 
responses thereto, and other relevant portions of the record and 
determined not to review the EID on June 19, 2009.
    The Commission then requested separate briefing concerning the 
imposition of civil penalties for violation of the cease and desist 
orders and a consent order. Epson, the Ninestar Respondents, and the 
Commission investigative attorney filed written submissions and 
responses thereto.
    Based upon its consideration of the EID, the submissions of the 
parties, and the entire record in this proceeding, the Commission 
adopts the EID's analysis concerning civil penalties, except as 
otherwise noted or supplemented in its order and opinion (to be issued 
later). However, while the Commission adopts the EID's recommended 
penalty with respect to the Mipo Respondents and the Apex Respondents, 
the Commission has determined to impose a lesser penalty on the 
Ninestar Respondents.
    Accordingly, and subject to final adjudication of any appeal of the 
same, the Commission has determined to impose a civil penalty in the 
amount of $11,110,000 against the Ninestar Respondents, jointly and 
severally. Against the Mipo Respondents, the Commission has determined 
to impose a civil penalty in the amount of $9,700,000 jointly and 
severally, and the Commission has determined to impose a civil penalty 
in the amount of $700,000 jointly and severally against the Apex 
    The authority for the Commission's determination is contained in 
section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1337), and 
section 210.75 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 
CFR 210.75).

    Issued: August 17, 2009.

    By order of the Commission.
Marilyn R. Abbott,
Secretary to the Commission.
[FR Doc. E9-20106 Filed 8-20-09; 8:45 am]