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After six years SCO's case against Novell ends in defeat

Simon Quicke

The long running legal battle between Novell and SCO over a dispute over Linux copyrights has finally ended.

A judge has ruled in favour of Novell and closed the case which started in 2004 ending not just that litigation but potential further battles on the same grounds between SCO and IBM.

The case started when SCO argued that Novell had sold it the copyrights along with the Unix system for $149m and as a result a legal claim was filed to stop its rival from using the copyrights as well as a demand for damages.

But earlier this year a Utah jury decided that Novell owned two key copyrights and not its rival.

Judge Ted Stewart said that the evidence against Novell wasn't strong enough to sustain the case.

"The jury could have rejected the testimony of SCO's witnesses for a number of reasons, including their lack of involvement in drafting the APA, the fact that there was little testimony on any actual discussions concerning the transfer of copyrights, or that many of the witnesses had a financial interest in the litigation," he said.

The final judgement contained the following words that have effectively ended the SCO case: "Judgment is entered in favor of Novell and against SCO on SCO's claim for breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing pursuant to the Court's Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law. The Clerk of the Court is directed to close this case forthwith."

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