A couple of weeks ago, in the context of multiple suits filed by WSOU Investments, LLC (d/b/a Brazos Licensing and Development) against ZTE, RPX reported on a recent chapter in the tension between Western District of Texas Judge Alan D. Albright’s turn to substantive matters, principally claim construction, and resolution of contested venue issues. ZTE had filed a mandamus petition asking the Federal Circuit to step in and order Judge Albright to transfer those suits to the Northern District of Texas as the West Texas litigation barreled toward a March 3, 2022 Markman hearing, the court having denied ZTE’s motion to await the Federal Circuit’s response. Well, March 3 has come and gone.
WSOU Investments, LLC (d/b/a Brazos Licensing and Development) has been litigating patents received in a large portfolio from Nokia (including Alcatel-Lucent) since March 2020, typically filing multiple, separate complaints, each hitting one defendant with one of those patents. This month, the plaintiff has added new cases to the roughly 125 already on the books, one against Canon (6:22-cv-00166), one against OnePlus (6:22-cv-00135), and four others against ZTE (6:22-cv-00136, 6:22-cv-00137, 6:22-cv-00138, 6:22-cv-00139), each an existing WSOU defendant, and all filed in the Western District of Texas. Even the limited consideration of WSOU’s litigation provided by this article involves, among other things, third-party complaints; multiple petitions for writs of mandamus concerning hotly contested motions to transfer, as well as an attempt to draw Federal Circuit attention to District Judge Alan D. Albright’s expansive approach to motions to effect alternate service on foreign defendants; and a motion to consolidate and limit discovery of third parties involved in WSOU’s purchase of its patent portfolio from Nokia.