Oraka v Geostel
Counsel for two of the defendants, Geostel and its director Paul Daynes, since June 2016. The case relates to industrial copyright in the design of a component called a cup used in asparagus-grading machines. I was instructed just after the High Court had awarded damages of $4.1m against my clients and another party, Napier Tool & Die, in 2016 - the largest award of damages for copyright infringement in New Zealand history.
That award was overturned by the Court of Appeal in 2016: reported at  2 NZLR 611. The High Court was directed to assess damages on a "user principle" (or notional licence fee) basis rather than lost profits. Geostel was awarded costs on Oraka's abandoned application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court:  NZSC 79. There was a further six day trial in the High Court in 2017 including extensive expert evidence. The High Court set damages at $510,000, plus interest going back to 2005 which effectively doubled the amount due: reported at (2018) 131 IPR 363. This was reduced on appeal to $47,000:  NZCA 256.