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Notice

In the Matter of Certain Refrigerators and Components Thereof; Notice of Commission Decision Not To Review an Initial Determination Granting in Part and Denying in Part Complainant's Motion To Amend the Complaint and Notice of Investigation

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AGENCY:

U.S. International Trade Commission.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

Notice is hereby given that the U.S. International Trade Commission has determined not to review the presiding administrative law judge's (“ALJ”) initial determination (“ID”) (Order No. 15) granting in part and denying in part complainant's motion for leave to amend the complaint and notice of investigation in the above-captioned investigation.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Jonathan J. Engler, Esq., Office of the General Counsel, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street, SW., Washington, DC 20436, telephone (202) 205-3112. Copies of the ALJ's IDs and all other non-confidential 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 at 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 this matter can be obtained by contacting the Commission's TDD terminal on (202) 205-1810.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

On February 21, 2008, the Commission instituted this investigation, based on a complaint filed by Whirlpool Patents Company of St. Joseph, Michigan; Whirlpool Manufacturing Corporation of St. Joseph, Michigan; Whirlpool Corporation of Benton Harbor, Michigan, and Maytag Corporation of Benton Harbor, Michigan (collectively, “Whirlpool”). The complaint, as supplemented, alleges violations of section 337 based upon the importation into the United States, the sale for importation, and the sale within the United States after importation of certain refrigerators and components thereof that infringe certain claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,082,130; 6,810,680 (“the '680 patent”); 6,915,644 (“the '644 patent”); 6,971,730; and 7,240,980. Whirlpool named LG Electronics, Inc.; LG Electronics, USA, Inc.; and LG Electronics Monterrey Mexico, S.A., De, CV (collectively, “LG”) as respondents. The complaint, as supplemented, further alleges that an industry in the United States exists as required by subsection (a)(2) of section 337 and requested that the Commission issue an exclusion order and cease and desist orders.

On September 11, 2008, Whirlpool and LG filed a joint motion seeking termination of this investigation with respect to the '680 patent and the '644 patent on the basis of a settlement agreement. On September 25, 2008, the ALJ issued an ID, Order No. 10, terminating the investigation, in part, as to the '680 and '644 patents. The ALJ found no indication that termination of the investigations on the basis of the settlement agreement would adversely affect the public interest, and that the procedural requirements for terminating the investigation, in part, had been met. No petitions for review were filed. On October 27, 2008, the Commission determined not to review Order No. 10.

On October 17, 2008, Whirlpool filed a motion for summary determination that it had satisfied the importation requirement. On October 29, 2008, the Commission investigative attorney supported Whirlpool's motion, and LG indicated that it would not oppose the motion. On November 20, 2008, the ALJ issued the subject ID, Order No. 14, Start Printed Page 78394granting complainant's motion for summary determination of importation. No petitions for review were filed. On December 15, the Commission issued notice that it had determined not to review Order No. 14.

On July 24, 2008, Whirlpool filed a motion seeking leave to amend the complaint and notice of investigation to (1) remove references to patents that had been withdrawn from this investigation; (2) add a reference to a non-exclusive license that relates to two patents at issue; and (3) update the current state of the domestic industry. LG indicated that it opposed Whirlpool's motion to amend on August 4, 2008. The Commission Investigative attorney did not oppose Whirlpool's proposed amendments. On August 11, Whirlpool filed a motion seeking leave to file a reply in support of its motion to amend, which was opposed by LG on August 15, 2008. On November 25, 2008, the ALJ issued Order No. 15, in which he granted Whirlpool's motion as to (1) and (3) above and denied it with respect to (2). No petitions for review were filed.

The Commission has determined not to review the subject ID. 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 in section 210.42 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 CFR 210.42).

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Issued: December 15, 2008.

By order of the Commission.

Marilyn R. Abbott,

Secretary to the Commission.

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[FR Doc. E8-30341 Filed 12-19-08; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 7020-02-P