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Shenzhen firm sues Apple over iPad trademark in Pudong

APPLE Inc. defended its right to use the iPad trademark in China in a heated court hearing today after a struggling Chinese electronics company denied having sold the mainland China rights to the popular tablet's name and accused Apple of trademark infringement.

Shenzhen Proview Technology claimed Apple infringed the iPad trademark it had registered for the mainland market and said Apple has no right to sell iPads under that name in China, the Pudong New Area People's Court heard.

Proview presented, as evidence, a computer the size of a small microwave oven, packed in a cardboard box, and said that was its IPAD.

In response, Apple's lawyers demanded Proview to prove that its product is actually marketed in China as it believed the debt-ridden company has no ability to produce the IPAD.

In the court, Proview asked the court to ban Apple Shanghai from selling iPads before the court makes an open trial.

Proview said the ban is to prevent further losses caused to the company, but the plaintiff only demanded 10,000 yuan (US$1,590) in lawsuit expense from Apple without mentioning any compensation.

Proview lawyers said this was because they could not value the losses as long as Apple is still selling iPads around the country.

"That's why we filed the lawsuit in Shanghai," said Ma Dongxiao, a Proview lawyer.

Proview said it could pay in cash when Apple's lawyers demanded Proview provide guarantees it could pay compensation for any losses if the court were to halt iPad sales pending a final decision on the trademark ownership.

Meanwhile, Apple appealed the court to terminate the trial in Shanghai, claiming its lawsuit against Proview in Shenzhen has not been concluded.

The court learned that Apple has appealed an earlier ruling by a Shenzhen court and the Guangdong Provincial Higher People's Court will hear the case next Wednesday.

The Pudong New Area People's Court did not make a verdict today.


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