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Appeals Court Denies Microsoft Delay Request

Aug 17, 2001, 17:29 (35 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Thor Olavsrud)

By Thor Olavsrud, InternetNews.com

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Friday denied a request by Microsoft Corp. to delay turning the ongoing antitrust case against the company back over to the U.S. Circuit Court for the District of Columbia.

On Aug. 8, Microsoft asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its appeal of the appeals court finding that Microsoft did indeed act as an illegal monopoly, and asked the appeals court to delay sending the case back to the lower court pending the Supreme Court's decision as to whether to hear the case.

In June, the appeals court threw out Circuit Court Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson's remedy after finding that he had acted improperly during the case by holding secret meetings with journalists and making biased comments against the company. However, the court chose not to invalidate Judge Jackson's finding that Microsoft had acted as a monopoly.

Now Microsoft is arguing that Judge Jackson's conduct should have invalidated his findings of fact as well as his remedy.

It is not yet clear whether the Supreme Court will consent to hear Microsoft's appeal, or if it would prefer to have the case work its way through the lower court again before possibly taking up any appeal that may result. According to reports, the court is expected to make its decision on hearing the case by as early as October, the same month Microsoft is scheduled to ship its new Windows XP operating system. That operating system is coming under increasing congressional and regulatory scrutiny.

For now, the case is headed back to the Circuit Court within seven days, and a new judge will be selected randomly to hear it. That judge will determine what remedy to impose on the company.

The case was brought against Microsoft by the U.S. Department of Justice and 18 states.