This Week: A once-sanctioned patent lawyer's latest lawsuits; a sudden change to a Web site; and judicial disagreements over "cookie cutter" patent lawsuits.
Last week was so full of interesting patent lawsuits, I just didn't have a chance to write about Mural Comm, LLC. The mysterious new patent-holding company sued three large retailers on March 24 and 25. The man prosecuting the Mural Comm lawsuits, once-sanctioned patent lawyer Jean-Marc Zimmerman, is keeping busy on many fronts; he was helping another holding company, GBM, LLC, file suit last week in New Jersey against an online food distributor, Foodgalaxy.com.
Zimmerman hasn't responded to TPA's phone and e-mail requests for comment over the last two weeks. But Martin Welt--the co-owner, with his son, of GBM, and the inventor of the patent being used to sue food companies--did pick up when contacted Tuesday.
Welt, a physicist and CEO of a New Jersey food distributor called Kariba Farms, was eager to talk about the software product described by the 7,184,987 patent. It's called Karibex and it allows buyers of products to shop from a variety of vendors through a single Web site. It also accommodates ads to be placed so that prospective buyers will see them. Welt filed for a patent on the software in 2001 with the help of lawyers from Morgan, Lewis & Bockius; the patent was granted in 2007.