Is Samsung Hiring This Apple Critic?

With the legal battles between Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung (SSNLF.PK) showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon, it’s important for the two companies to have the right people on their side. However, it may be a slightly questionable move to hire a judge to work for your legal team after he recently passed a harsh judgement in your favor against your bitter rival.

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Robin Jacob, an appellate court judge in the U.K., ordered Apple to publish a notice in newspapers and on its website apologizing to Samsung last year, and then followed up by asking the iPhone maker to pay the Korean company’s legal fees in the case on an indemnity basis. He also told Apple, after it had published the apology, that the language it used in the statement amounted to lying and asked the company to revise it. “I hope that the lack of integrity involved in this incident is entirely atypical of Apple,” he wrote in his ruling.

Now, in a plot twist, Samsung has hired the same judge as an expert witness in a separate U.S. International Trade Commission case. Jacob will be one of nine “experts […] working on behalf of” Samsung in an ITC investigation of Ericsson’s (NASDAQ:ERIC) patent infringement complaint, according to a filing that FOSS Patents noticed…

On Thursday, Samsung said in a statement to CNBC that Jacob had been hired by the legal firm that represents it, and was not directly being paid by the company.

“Sir Robin Jacob is not a legal representative of Samsung Electronics,” it said in the statement. “A highly reputed intellectual property expert and academic, Sir Robin has been contracted as an expert by a law firm that represents Samsung Electronics in its case against Ericsson.”

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According to FOSS Patents, the move was unusual. “For someone so concerned with ‘integrity,’ it is utterly unusual to issue a high-profile and extreme ruling in favor of a particular party (Samsung in this case) only to be hired as an expert by that same party in another dispute,” the blog said.

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