Big Verdicts Are Back In Texas – Patent Holder Receives Delayed $113 Million

Becton Dickinson

(Thursday, September 19, 2013 – Tyler, TX): A Tyler jury found Defendant Becton, Dickinson, and Co. (BD) liable against Retractable Technologies, Inc. (RTI) for $113 million. This trial put to rest a lawsuit that Plaintiff RTI initially filed in 2007. During the process of litigation, the lawsuit was bifurcated into two parts: a patent suit and an anti-trust suit. In 2009, a jury awarded RTI $5 million from BD for patent infringement, which the Federal Circuit confirmed in part and overruled in part in 2011. Now, a jury has awarded RTI another $113 million for BD’s attempted monopolization, a violation of anti-trust laws.

     The antitrust portion of the trial began two-weeks ago, pitting well-known legendary trial attorneys against one another—Otis Carroll of Ireland Carroll & Kelley for RTI and Sam Baxter of McKool Smith for BD. Mr. Carroll and Mr. Baxter both delivered powerful opening statements.

     Today, the jury listened to both sides present closing argument before deliberating a few hours and rendering their $113 million verdict. Mr. Baxter, with the help of his colleague Robert Atkins, made presenting look easy with a calm precision that commanded attention. After BD’s closing arguments, BD seemed poised to come out on top. Mr. Carroll, however, with his easy, light, country-boy style, won the jury back on rebuttal by painting a simple picture for them to visualize. Mr. Carroll returned to his effective “little dog” versus the “big dog” analogy that he introduced in his opening for RTI, and that BD failed to effectively undercut.

     One pivotal decision had a heavy impact on the case’s outcome. Judge Davis accepted the recommendation of Judge Roy S. Payne, that patent infringement may be considered anti-competitive conduct under Section 2 of the Sherman Act. Mr. Carroll exploited this critical ruling throughout the trial. Had the ruling gone the other way, BD may have won on summary judgment.