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Part of AMD's anti-Intel lawsuit dismissed

But suggestions of foul play remain

A district court judge in the US state of Delaware has dismissed part of AMD's lawsuit against Intel.

The dismissed claims relate to alleged business practices of Intel that AMD claims affected sales of its own microprocessors.

Intel petitioned the court to have the claims dismissed because it said that while AMD is headquartered in the US it manufactures its processors in Germany and assembles them in Malaysia, Singapore and China. AMD is already seeking damages through the Japanese courts, European Commission and Korea Fair Trade Commission for the same business practices that are alleged in the US lawsuit. Because the alleged harm was suffered outside the US and because AMD is seeking redress overseas, Intel argued that the allegations fall outside the jurisdiction of the US courts, according to a memorandum opinion from the court.

AMD contended that it is not seeking such 'foreign commerce claims' and that the x86 microprocessor market is a global market and that Intel's conduct in overseas markets had an effect on its business in the US.

"AMD has not demonstrated that the alleged foreign conduct of Intel has direct, substantial and foreseeable effects in the US which gives rise to its claim. AMD's allegations, taken in the light of the most favorable to AMD, describe a foreign effect and a foreign harm that have had ripple effects for the domestic market, but have not had any direct, substantial or reasonable effect which would give rise to an antitrust claim within the jurisdictional reach of the Sherman Act.

"Accordingly, the court will dismiss AMD's claims based on alleged lost sales of AMD's microprocessors to foreign customers," US District Judge Joseph Farnan wrote in his conclusion.

Chuck Mulloy, an Intel spokesman, said, "We are pleased that the judge appears to have agreed with out legal argument to remove those aspects of the case outside US jurisdiction." He declined further comment until a conference with the judge takes place later today.

AMD could not immediately be reached for comment.

AMD, the long-time number two player in the microprocessor market, jolted the IT industry in June last year when it filed its broad lawsuit against rival Intel. The suit alleged Intel had managed to maintain a monopoly in the PC processor market by illegally coercing customers around the world into using its products.

The 48-page court filing identified 38 companies that, AMD alleged, had been coerced into using Intel processors at the expense of competing chips from AMD. Included are almost all of the large companies in the PC and server market, such as Dell, Sony, Gateway and IBM.

Among the allegation, AMD said Fujitsu Siemens was offered a 'special discount' on Celeron processors in return for hiding AMD-based computers on its website and removing references from its retail catalogue. Also, at the 2004 Super Computing Show, an annual conference devoted to high performance computing, Intel offered computer makers money to remove AMD systems from their booths.


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