RealTime IT News

Ciena Sues Nortel Over Patents

Ciena is suing rival Nortel over intellectual property rights related to optical transport technology, the company said Tuesday.

The action, filed in U.S. District Court in Texas, alleges that several products in Nortel's Optera family infringe on six Ciena patents.

"Ciena is seeking to protect its intellectual property and technology leadership with the filing of this complaint," Nicole Anderson, a Ciena spokeswoman, told internetnews.com.

The company seeks an injunction and monetary damages. It's too soon to speculate on the amount that could be recovered if the suit goes to trial and Ciena prevails, Anderson said.

Christina Warren, a Nortel spokeswoman, said she had not seen the lawsuit yet and could not comment on it.

Lawsuits are not uncommon in the network equipment sector, where companies pumps billions of dollars into research and development.

Just two months ago, Nortel agreed to drop its copyright and trade-secret lawsuit against Arbinet-thExchange for $850,000. Oftentimes, lawsuits are settled out of court for a cash payment and/or an agreement to license the technology in dispute.