Mark Supko, Partner Washington, D.C.
msupko@crowell.com
Phone: +1 202.624.2734
1001 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20004-2595

Mark Supko recently concluded a five-year term as chair of the firm's Intellectual Property Group. He is a trial lawyer whose practice has been dedicated to IP litigation for nearly 25 years, with a heavy emphasis on patent litigation in the computer, electrical and mechanical arts, serving corporate clients in diverse industries including automotive, aerospace, consumer electronics, and telecommunications. Prior to joining the firm, Mark was a partner in a leading international IP boutique; and before pursuing a career in the law, he was a systems engineer for the world's largest automaker. Mark is recognized by Chambers USA as a leading lawyer in the D.C. Intellectual Property and D.C. Intellectual Property: Litigation categories.

Mark is experienced in all aspects of patent litigation, from pre-suit investigations through trial and appeal. He has litigated patent infringement cases in federal district courts across the country, has argued appeals before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, has handled Section 337 cases before the U.S. International Trade Commission, and has led teams in inter partes reviews (IPRs) before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Mark has successfully litigated cases involving a wide variety of technologies, including automobile navigation systems, automotive braking systems, wireless communications, Internet infrastructure and applications, digital imaging, oil refining and medical devices. These cases have come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from defending some of the largest companies in the world from patents being asserted against entire industry segments, to representation of small companies asserting their crown jewel patents against isolated infringers.

Mark represents clients in enforcing their patent rights against infringers and in defending against the enforcement efforts of others, with considerable experience defending cases brought by non-practicing entities (NPEs). He also has experience litigating other types of intellectual property matters, including trademark infringement, copyright infringement, and trade secret misappropriation. Mark recently was lead trial counsel for the plaintiff in a case involving air disc brake technology that resulted in a jury verdict of willful infringement and a multi-million dollar attorneys' fee award.

In addition to litigation, Mark's practice involves counseling clients on matters relating to the acquisition, protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights. He has significant experience in post-grant validity challenges before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, including inter partes reviews (IPRs) and ex parte reexaminations, and preparation of legal opinions relating to patent validity, enforceability and infringement. He also has been extensively involved in licensing of intellectual property, including establishment of licensing programs through both adversarial and non-adversarial means.

Mark is also active in the firm's pro bono program, focusing his community service efforts on defensive asylum cases before the U.S. Immigration Court. He has successfully represented numerous victims of persecution at the hands of foreign governments in securing political asylum in the U.S..

Representative Cases

  • Represented defendant General Motors in a patent infringement action involving personalized marketing communications brought by a non-practicing entity against a wide swath of U.S. industries. Refusing to buckle under to the plaintiff's demands despite scores of existing licenses, we essentially forced the plaintiff to withdraw its complaint shortly before trial. Phoenix Licensing LLP v. General Motors LLC, No. 2:13-cv-1093 (E.D. Tex.).
  • Represented amicus General Motors in Federal Circuit appeal of a preliminary injunction granted in a patent infringement action that threatened the supply of lithium ion batteries used in the majority of General Motors' electric vehicles. The appellate court reversed the preliminary injunction, relying in significant part on the public interest arguments in the amicus brief we filed on behalf of General Motors and another major U.S. automaker. Celgard, LLC v. LG Chem, Ltd., Nos. 2014-1675 (Fed. Cir.).   
  • Represented plaintiffs Bendix and Knorr-Bremse in a patent infringement suit against a main competitor. Following a six-day jury trial, we secured a verdict of willful infringement, a permanent injunction, compensatory and enhanced damages, and a multi-million dollar attorneys' fee award. Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems et al. v. Haldex Brake Products, No. 1:09-CV-176 (N.D. Ohio).
  • Represented respondent General Motors in a Section 337 investigation before the U.S. International Trade Commission seeking to exclude importation of vehicles equipped with in-dash navigation systems. We successfully pressured the Complainant to terminate the investigation at the close of fact discovery. Certain Automotive GPS Navigation Systems, ITC Inv. No. 337-TA-814 (U.S.I.T.C.).
  • Represented plaintiff Medien Patent Verwaltung, a small German film company, in a patent infringement action against the largest U.S. film processor involving anti-piracy measures for motion picture films. We forced a favorable settlement shortly before trial after winning summary judgment of infringement and non-obviousness. MPV v. Deluxe Entertainment Services, No. 1:10-cv-04119 (S.D.N.Y.).
  • Represented defendant OnStar in a patent infringement action involving vehicle-based Internet communications. We forced a voluntary dismissal of the complaint with prejudice after securing a transfer to OnStar's home forum. Automotive Technologies Int'l v. OnStar, No. 4:11-CV-15604 (E.D. Mich.).
  • Represented third-party defendant BAE Systems in a patent infringement action filed against the United States in the Court of Federal Claims pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1498 involving a government contract relating to laser-based missile countermeasures.  We succeeded in invalidating the asserted patent in an inter partes review at the USPTO, resulting in dismissal of the case against the United States. Cheetah Omni v. United States et al., No. 1:11-CV-255 (Fed. Cl.).
  • Represented defendant OnStar in a patent infringement action involving network architectures for remote control of vehicle-based systems. Adopting an aggressive defense strategy, we succeeded in securing a very favorable settlement prior to expert discovery. Joao Control & Monitoring Systems v. OnStar, No. 8:10-CV-01909 (C.D. Cal.).
  • Represented defendant Yamaha in a patent infringement action involving communication protocols for wireless networking of multimedia devices. We forced a favorable settlement by pursuing an aggressive defense strategy focused on invalidation of the asserted patents through an early "Alice motion." Open Network Solutions v. Yamaha, No. 1:14-cv-702 (D. Del.).
  • Represented defendant Vizada in a patent infringement action involving satellite communication systems, securing a favorable settlement providing the client with freedom to operate in the market for the accused technology. Advanced Media Networks v. Vizada et al., No. 1:10-CV-194 (S.D.N.Y.).
  • Represented plaintiff Curtiss-Wright Flow Control in a patent infringement action against a competitor involving industrial valves used to dehead coke drums during oil refining operations. Following the grant of a preliminary injunction, we secured a settlement that kept the competitor's accused valve out of market. Curtiss-Wright v. Velan, No. 04-CV-1157 (W.D. Tex.).
  • Represented defendant Kodak in two related patent infringement actions involving a process for virtual proofing of digital print jobs. We secured a favorable settlement after claim construction. Colorquick v. Kodak, Nos. 6:08-CV-165, 6:06-CV-390 (E.D. Tex.).
  • Represented specialty tobacco company Star Scientific in a decade-long legal battle against "big tobacco" seeking to enforce patents directed to an improved curing method that substantially prevents the formation of the primary carcinogen in cured tobacco. The case settled favorably after two rounds of trials and appeals. Star Scientific v. R.J. Reynolds, No. MJG-01-CV-1504 (D. Md.).
  • Represented defendants BMW and Mercedes in a patent infringement action involving the transmission of advertisements to vehicles using GPS and Internet technologies. We forced a favorable settlement immediately after a Markman hearing.  Fernandez Innovative Technologies v. BMW and Mercedes et al., No. 07-CV-1397 (N.D. Ill.).
  • Represented third-party General Motors in a patent infringement action brought against the United States in the Court of Federal Claims involving a technology for heat treatment of metal vehicle components. We successfully defeated the plaintiff's effort to take intrusive third-party discovery. Hitkansut v. United States, No. 1:12-CV-303 (Fed. Cl.).


Affiliations

Admitted to practice: District of Columbia; New York; U.S. Supreme Court; U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and Second Circuit; U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, District of Columbia, Eastern District of Michigan, and Eastern District of Texas; and U.S. Court of Federal Claims

Professional Organizations

  • American Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Federal Circuit Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • The Sedona Conference


Representative Engagements

Automotive

  • Represented defendant General Motors in a patent infringement action involving personalized marketing communications brought by a non-practicing entity against a wide swath of U.S. industries. Refusing to buckle under to the plaintiff’s demands despite scores of existing licenses, we essentially forced the plaintiff to withdraw its complaint shortly before trial. Phoenix Licensing LLP v. General Motors LLC, No. 2:13-cv-1093 (E.D. Tex.).
  • Represented Belgian patent owner and its U.S. subsidiary in patent infringement action against supplier of two-tone vehicle instrument panels and door panels manufactured using patented spray molding process. Recticel Automobilesysteme GmbH et al. v. Automotive Components Holdings, No. 2:10-CV-14097 (E.D. Mich.).
  • Represented plaintiffs Bendix and Knorr-Bremse in a patent infringement suit against a main competitor. Following a six-day jury trial, we secured a verdict of willful infringement, a permanent injunction, compensatory and enhanced damages, and a multi-million dollar attorneys' fee award. Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems et al. v. Haldex Brake Products, No. 1:09-CV-176 (N.D. Ohio).
  • Represented respondent General Motors in a Section 337 investigation seeking to exclude importation of vehicles equipped with in-dash navigation systems. We successfully pressured the complainant to terminate the investigation at the close of fact discovery. Certain Automotive GPS Navigation Systems, Components Thereof, and Products Containing Same, ITC Inv. No. 337-TA-814(U.S.I.T.C.).
  • Represented defendant OnStar in a patent infringement action involving vehicle-based Internet communications. We forced a voluntary dismissal of the complaint with prejudice after securing a transfer to OnStar's home forum. Automotive Technologies Int'l v. OnStar, No. 4:11-CV-15604 (E.D. Mich.).
  • Represented defendants BMW and Mercedes in a patent infringement action involving the transmission of advertisements to vehicles using GPS and Internet technologies. We forced a favorable settlement immediately after a Markman hearing. Fernandez Innovative Technologies v. BMW and Mercedes et al., No. 07-CV-1397 (N.D. Ill.).
  • Represented defendant OnStar in a patent infringement action involving remote control of vehicle operational systems. We secured a favorable settlement after successfully compelling the deposition of the plaintiff's principal. Joao Control & Monitoring Systems v. OnStar, LLC et al., No. 8:10-CV-01909 (C.D. Cal.).
  • Represented the plaintiffs in a patent infringement action involving air disc brakes for commercial vehicles. We obtained a favorable settlement following a Markman hearing after prevailing on the key claim construction issues. Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems et al. v. WABCO Automotive Control Systems, No. 1:09-CV-177 (N.D. Ohio).

Chemical/Chemical Engineering

  • Represented plaintiff Curtiss-Wright Flow Control in a patent infringement action against a competitor involving industrial valves used to dehead coke drums during oil refining operations. Following the grant of a preliminary injunction, we secured a settlement that kept the competitor's accused valve out of the market. Curtiss-Wright Flow Control v. Velan, No. 04-CV-1157 (W.D. Tex.).
  • Represented specialty tobacco company Star Scientific in a decade-long legal battle against "big tobacco" seeking to enforce patents directed to an improved curing method that substantially prevents the formation of the primary carcinogen in cured tobacco. The case settled favorably after two rounds of trials and appeals. Star Scientific v. R.J. Reynolds, No. MJG-01-CV-1504 (D. Md.).
  • Represented the plaintiff in a patent infringement action against a competitor involving industrial valves used to dehead coke drums during oil refining operations. The case settled favorably on the eve of trial. Curtiss-Wright Flow Control v. Z&J Technologies et al., No. 06-CV-2402 (C.D. Cal.).
  • Represented manufacturer of helicopter flight data recorders and its customers in a patent infringement suit involving endothermic chemical heat sinks used for fire protection, securing a favorable settlement during expert discovery. Hayes v. Penny & Giles et al., No. 2-04-CV-3084 (D.N.J.).

Computer/Electrical

  • Represented patentee in declaratory judgment action involving patents, copyrights and trademarks covering graphical modeling system used to develop insurance claim estimates, securing favorable settlement that resolved risk of confusion in market. Symbility v. Xactware, No. 2:05-CV-73068 (E.D. Mich.).
  • Represented Kodak in two related patent infringement actions involving a process for virtual proofing of digital print jobs. We secured a favorable settlement after claim construction. Colorquick v. Kodak, Nos. 6:08-CV-165, 6:06-CV-390 (E.D. Tex.).
  • Represented Kodak in patent infringement action brought by non-practicing entity on patents involving process for enhancing scanned digital images. We secured a favorable settlement during fact discovery. GTX v. Kodak et al., No. 6:06-CV-244 (E.D. Tex.).
  • Represented manufacturer of optical fiber switches in defense of patent infringement suit. We forced a favorable settlement after counterclaiming for infringement of our clients' own earlier patents covering the technology at issue. Apcon v. Curtiss-Wright and Systran, No. 07-CV-402 (C.D. Cal.).

Consumer Products

  • Represented complainant Invacare in a Section 337 investigation involving importation of patented adjustable hospital beds. We succeeded in obtaining a consent order excluding the accused products from entry into the United States. Adjustable-Height Beds and Components Thereof, Inv. No. 337-TA-734 (U.S.I.T.C.).
  •  Represented Kodak in patent infringement action brought by non-practicing entity on patents involving network interface cards for computer peripheral devices. The case settled favorably during fact discovery. Whetstone Electronics v. Kodak et al., No. 6:08-CV-317 (E.D. Tex.).

Defense/Government Contracts

  • Represented third-party defendant BAE Systems in a patent infringement action filed against the United States in the Court of Federal Claims pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1498, involving a government contract relating to laser-based missile countermeasure systems. Cheetah Omni v. United States et al., No. 1:11-CV-255 (Fed. Cl.). We initiated an inter partes review of the asserted patent before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and succeeded in invalidating the patent, leading to dismissal of the case against the government.
  • Represented several BAE Systems entities in a patent infringement action involving fiber optic lasers used in missile countermeasure systems. We secured a voluntary dismissal before answering the complaint due to a lack of any actionable commercial activity. Cheetah Omni v. BAE Systems et al., No. 6:10-CV-602 (E.D. Tex.).

Financial Services

  • Represented leading supplier of prepaid gift cards in patent infringement action involving system for processing financial transactions. We secured a stipulated judgment of noninfringement following a favorable claim construction ruling. Every Penny Counts v. First Data et al., No. 8:07-CV-1254 (M.D. Fla.).

Medical Devices/Healthcare

  • Represented leading supplier of dental veneers in patent infringement suit involving process for manufacturing porcelain dental restorations, securing summary judgment of noninfringement. PSN Illinois v. Den-Mat et al., No. 04-CV-7232 (N.D. Ill.).

Telecommunications

  • Represented defendant Vizada in a patent infringement action involving satellite communication systems, securing a favorable settlement providing the client with freedom to operate in the market for the accused technology. Advanced Media Networks v. Vizada et al., No. 1:10-CV-194 (S.D.N.Y.).
  • Represented defendant ZTE, a leading cellular telephone manufacturer, in a patent infringement action involving turn-by-turn navigation software installed on GPS-equipped cellular telephones. Levine v. ZTE (USA) Inc. et al., No. 2:11-CV-56 (E.D. Tex.).
  • Represented Nortel Networks in a patent infringement action involving distributed telecommunications networks using spread spectrum modulation. We secured a favorable settlement for a small fraction of the plaintiff's original demand. Linex v. Nortel et al., No. 05-CV-80300 (S.D. Fla.).

Representative Appellate Cases

  • Represented amicus General Motors in Federal Circuit appeal of a preliminary injunction granted in a patent infringement action that threatened the supply of lithium ion batteries used in the majority of General Motors’ electric vehicles. The appellate court reversed the preliminary injunction, relying in significant part on the public interest arguments in the amicus brief we filed on behalf of General Motors and another major U.S. automaker. Celgard, LLC v. LG Chem, Ltd., Nos. 2014-1675 (Fed. Cir.).
  • Represented specialty tobacco company Star Scientific in an appeal involving patents directed to an improved tobacco curing method. Following a six-week jury trial, the district court entered judgment in favor of the defendant. The Federal Circuit reversed on each of four different grounds of invalidity, and the case subsequently settled favorably. Star Scientific v. R.J. Reynolds, No. 2010-1183 (Fed. Cir.).
  • Represented leading supplier of prepaid gift cards in patent infringement appeal involving system for processing financial transactions after securing stipulated judgment of noninfringement below. Judgment of noninfringement was affirmed. Every Penny Counts v. First Data et al., Nos. 2008-1434,-1438 (Fed. Cir.).
  • Represented Star Scientific in an appeal involving patents directed to an improved tobacco curing method. Following a bench trial, the district court entered judgment in favor of the defendant, finding the patents-in-suit unenforceable due to inequitable conduct. The Federal Circuit reversed, entering judgment in Star Scientific's favor on inequitable conduct and remanding for a full trial on the merits. Star Scientific v. R.J. Reynolds, No. 2007-1448 (Fed. Cir.).
  • Represented supplier of dental veneers in patent infringement appeal involving process for manufacturing porcelain dental restorations after winning on summary judgment below. Summary judgment of noninfringement was affirmed. PSN Illinois v. Den-Mat et al., No. 2007-1512 (Fed. Cir.).


Highlights, News & Knowledge


Speeches & Presentations

  • "The Impact of Alice v. CLS Bank," Sedona Conference Working Group 9/10 Joint Midyear Meeting, Miami, FL (May 19, 2015). Panelist: Mark Supko.
  • "Use of Experts, Daubert & Motions in Limine," Sedona Conference Working Group 10 Midyear Meeting, San Francisco, CA (April 10, 2014). Panelist: Mark Supko.
  • "The Use of Experts in Patent Litigation," Sedona Conference Working Group 10: Patent Litigation Best Practices Inaugural Annual Meeting, Washington, D.C. (September 20, 2013). Panelist: Mark Supko.


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Firm News & Announcements

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