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Weil Wins Preliminary Injunctions for Illumina in Competitor Patent Litigation

On June 13, 2020, Weil won a major victory on behalf of longtime client Illumina when the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California granted Illumina’s motions for preliminary injunctions against a major competitor, Chinese conglomerate BGI. The court’s ruling prevents BGI from launching its DNA sequencers in the U.S., and ensures Illumina’s continued leadership in the sequencer market without having to face large-scale infringement by a well-financed imitator.

These wins were particularly noteworthy given the circumstances in which Weil had to litigate and argue the injunction motions and other aspects of the cases. Even as the COVID-19 pandemic began enveloping the world, BGI continued to pursue its U.S. market roll-out, and refused to voluntarily defer its roll-out until after the shelter-in-place orders ended. The Weil team was then forced to take five Zoom depositions on an expedited basis, including three expert witnesses retained by BGI, and argue the injunction motions via Zoom before Judge Orrick.

The Weil team included Patent Litigation and Life Sciences practices Co-Chair Ed Reines and partners Doug McClellan and Derek Walter, counsel Melissa Hotze, and associates Stephen Bosco,Christopher Lavin, Andrew Gesior, Sara Townsend, and Amanda Do Couto.