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Presstek Sues VIM Distributor Prograf for Patent and Trademark Violations

January 15, 2009
HUDSON, NH—January 15, 2009—Presstek, Inc. today announced that it has filed a lawsuit in United States District Court in New Hampshire against a distributor of printing plates manufactured by Israeli company VIM Technologies, Ltd. The Complaint alleges that Prograf Digital Services, Inc. and its President Joseph Musgrave violated Presstek’s rights by selling VIM printing plates, which Presstek alleges infringe Presstek’s U.S. Patent Nos. 5,339,737 and 5,487,338. Presstek also claims that Prograf and Musgrave have violated Presstek’s federally registered DI Trademark, which Presstek has held since 1992. 

Presstek alleges that these sales have continued after repeated demands for Prograf to cease the unlawful violation of Presstek’s rights, and that Musgrave is personally liable as he intentionally aided and abetted the infringing sales.

Presstek is asking the Federal District Court to issue an injunction prohibiting Prograf, Musgrave and any party acting in concert with either of them from selling, offering for sale, advertising, distributing or soliciting orders for (i) any of the infringing printing plates and/or (ii) any product that infringes Presstek’s DI trademark. Presstek is also seeking to have the Court award Presstek actual damages to compensate Presstek for the infringement, increased damages of three times the actual damages as provided by Federal law, as well as attorneys’ fees.

In commenting on the lawsuit, James R. Van Horn, Presstek’s General Counsel, said “Presstek has worked hard to develop its intellectual property, and we work hard to protect it. In early 2008 we initiated proceedings before the International Trade Commission in Washington, D.C. intended to stop the sale of this infringing product by VIM Technologies. This case is well advanced and we anticipate a successful resolution during 2009. With this recently filed lawsuit we are declaring our intention to seek monetary damages from parties who have violated our legally protected patent rights, such as Prograf Digital Services. It is illegal for a party to sell or use products that violate these rights.”

In February 2008, Presstek filed a Complaint with the International Trade Commission (ITC) against Israeli printing plate manufacturer VIM Technologies, Ltd. and its manufacturing partner Hanita Coatings RCA, Ltd. for infringement of Presstek's patent and trademark rights.  Presstek also sued four U.S. based distributors of VIM products: Spicers Paper, Inc., Guaranteed Service & Supplies, Inc., Ohio Graphco Inc., and Recognition Systems Inc., as well as one Canadian based distributor, AteCe Canada.  Presstek subsequently settled with Ohio Graphco, Inc., which agreed to stop selling the VIM product and to cooperate in the ITC’s investigation. Presstek is seeking, among other things, an Order from the ITC forbidding the importation and sale of the VIM printing plates in the United States; such an Order would be enforced at all U.S. borders by the U.S. Customs Service.

 

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