Background - Practices (Details)

Technology, Media & Telecommunications: Representative Engagements

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Representative Engagements

  • Fiber optic right-of-way class actions. We serve as national coordinating counsel for a major transportation company in a series of class action lawsuits in 30 states against railroads and telecommunications companies seeking damages as the result of the installation of fiber optic cable on railroad right-of-way.
  • Cellular phone late fee class litigation. Crowell & Moring represents a leading telecommunications company in a series of consumer class actions filed in Maryland state court alleging excessive late fees for billing payments. We have taken the lead in organizing a joint defense group of cable-wireless, and other communications company defendants sued in similar lawsuits.
  • Copper pricing antitrust litigation. Crowell & Moring is pursuing a major action on behalf of a group of 23 indirect copper buyers, including telecommunications companies, alleging worldwide price manipulation by a copper broker.
  • Achieved dismissal of qui tam case brought by DCAA auditors based on information they obtained in the course of their own audit. Wercinski v. IBM, 982 F.Supp. 449 (S.D. Texas 1997).
  • Successfully represented AOL in first Internet monopolization case involving on-line access and marketing of computer games, and prosecution of counter claims involving theft of proprietary assets.
  • Sex harassment. On behalf of a large telephone operating company, we obtained summary judgment on plaintiff's claims of sexual harassment and various state law claims, in federal court in Virginia.
  • Constitutional challenge to the Federal Communication Act of 1996. We obtained a landmark decision from the Texas District Court holding the provisions of the Act that singled out a named group of Bell Operatings Companies to be unconstitutional under the little-used Bill of Attainder Clause. The Fifth Circuit reversed 2-1, however, over a lengthy dissent.
  • Federal District Court suit to prevent use of infringing domain name. We successfully brought a quick end to use of a name that infringed our client's registered trademark, in a settlement that included payments covering attorneys fees. We represented a coalition of broadcast and telecommunications industry associations in supporting the FCC's successful defense of its radiation hazard rules for radio frequency licensees in the US Second Circuit Court of Appeals.
  • In a six-month arbitration hearing, obtained a $35 million copyright royalty award for a coalition of U.S. commercial television stations, and protected the award on appeal.
  • Obtained an ASBCA decision that government diversion of radios from one foreign customer to another constituted a "constructive change," entitling the contractor to the difference between the contract price and the price for which the radios would have been sold directly. E-Systems, Inc., ASBCA No. 21091, 82-1 BCA 15,774.
  • Defended company and individuals in ten-day jury trial, after which case settled for nuisance value. United States ex rel. Carpenter et al v. Harris Corp. (E.D. Va No. 98-1727A)
  • Grupo Sistemas Interegrales de Telecomunicacion S.A. de C.V. v. AT&T Communications, Inc. 1996 (WL 312535 (S.D.N.Y. June 10, 1996) Successful defense of US company from claims of breach of contract and fraud arising from sale of satellite communications equipment to a foreign corporation.