A class-action lawsuit against Rambus Inc. has been filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, alleging that the company misled investors over by fraudulently claiming patents and collecting licensing revenue related to SDRAM (Synchronous Dynamic Random Access Memory) technology.
After losing a court battle with memory chip maker Infineon Technologies AG, Rambus was found guilty of fraud in May and fined US$3.5 million in punitive damages. The judge in the case ruled that Rambus had acted improperly when it obtained patents on SDRAM chip designs which were being developed by the JEDEC (Joint Electron Device Engineering Council), an industry group that sets standards for semiconductor products and technologies. The fraudulent behavior of Rambus in connection with the SDRAM patents resulted millions of dollars in shareholder losses between January 18, 2000, and May 9, 2001, when the fraud verdict was handed down, according to a statement released by Stull, Stull & Brody, the law firm that filed the suit.
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