Kirt O’Neill Named Litigator of the Week by The American Lawyer following $2 Million Patent Verdict

(San Antonio) – Akin Gump intellectual property partner Kirt O’Neill has been named Litigator of the Week by The American Lawyer. This follows a two-week jury trial in federal court in Madison, Wisconsin, in which O’Neill and a team from Akin Gump obtained a verdict in favor of Inguran LLC, doing business as Sexing Technologies (ST), in a case involving antitrust violations brought by one of ST’s largest customers.

ST, a genetics company specializing in the collection and sexing of dairy and beef cattle semen, was sued by ABS Global for antitrust violations triggered by ABS’s desire to launch a competing service during the term of the parties’ contract. ABS sought roughly $70 million in damages. ST then countersued for patent infringement, trade secret misappropriation and breach of contract.

In an overwhelming win for ST, the jury found no violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act, but did determine that ABS infringed valid claims of ST’s patents and materially breached the parties’ agreement. The jury awarded damages of $2 million for trade secret theft (for which liability was stipulated) and patent infringement, as well as an ongoing royalty for future patent infringement.

The Akin Gump team, in addition to Mr. O’Neill, included senior counsel Dan Moffett, and counsel Jamie Duncan, Andy Rosbrook and Rehan Safiullah, all members of the intellectual property practice. They were joined by antitrust partner Fairley Spillman and litigation counsel Clayton Matheson. Additional members of the team included intellectual property counsel Samar Shah and associates Ashley Brown and Tyler Kendrick and litigation counsel Katie Creely.

This is the Akin Gump team’s second trial win this year on Sherman Act and patent infringement on behalf of Sexing Technologies. The first came in January following a three-week jury trial in federal court in Colorado.

To read the story in The American Lawyer on Mr. O'Neill, please click here.

Founded in 1945, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is a leading international law firm with more than 900 lawyers in offices throughout the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

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