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Research in Motion to take hit on NTP litigation

Research In Motion, maker of the BlackBerry e-mail device, said on Thursday it would take a fourth quarter charge of between $7m and $8m related to a patent lawsuit by NTP

RIM said there could be a potential increase in damages beyond the previously announced $23m awarded by a US jury in November 2002, bringing the estimated fiscal 2003 provision recorded to date to $39.7m to $40.7m.

In January, the US Patent and Trademark Office ordered a re-examination of five patents owned by NTP, which won a $23.1m patent infringement case against RIM in 2002.

The patent office had ordered the re-examination after determining that certain relevant patents and publications it had not previously considered raised questions regarding the patents of NTP, a privately owned holding company that controls eight patents for a group of Illinois-based investors.


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