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AMD, Intel to meet in court — again

Can EC anti-trust investigators view Intel files?

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Intel and AMD will face each other in the US Supreme Court today. AMD wants the court to force its arch-rival to hand over documentary evidence it considers vital for the European Commission's anti-trust investigation into the chip giant's behaviour.

The documents - all 60,000 pages of them - were offered up by Intel during a separate case. AMD believes that US law allows papers made public in such circumstances to be accessible by overseas judiciaries - in this case the EC.

AMD has already won the right do pass on the documents, thanks to a District Court ruling. On 1 October, AMD asked the San Jose District Court to force Intel to release to EC investigators expert witness testimonies presented during Intergraph's anti-trust and patent violation action against the chip giant.

Today's hearing follows Intel's appeal against that ruling. It doesn't dispute the law, but claims that since the EC investigation isn't a lawsuit, it is not covered by the US statute.

"They're seeking to get access to documents that are under court-ordered seal in discovery for litigation that doesn't exist," Intel spokesman Chuck Mulloy told Reuters.

Ironically, the EC agrees with Intel, but AMD is determined to win the right to submit the documents from the Intergraph action in any case. According to AMD lawyer Pat Lynch, the EC is worried about the precedent that an AMD victory would set.

AMD believes that the documents will support its allegation that Intel has used strong-arm tactics to dissuade PC vendors from using AMD processors. ®

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