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Oracle: SAP Admits Copyright Infringement

More twists arise in Oracle's legal battle with SAP.

SAP's request for a shortened trial has been added to this story.



) -- There are yet more twists in


(ORCL) - Get Report

legal battle



(SAP) - Get Report

. The case is due in court next week.

In court documents, Oracle says that SAP has notified it via email that the German firm will not contest Oracle's claim for contributory copyright infringement. Oracle is seeking substantial damages from SAP after accusing the firm of stealing its software.

"SAP management has insisted for three and a half years of litigation that it knew nothing about SAP's own massive theft of Oracle's intellectual property," said an Oracle spokesperson in an e-mail to


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Thursday. "Today, SAP has finally confessed it knew about the theft all along. The evidence at trial will show that the SAP Board of Directors valued Oracle's copyrighted software so highly, they were willing to steal it rather than compete fairly."

A jury trial to settle the case is scheduled to begin on Monday. In earlier court documents, SAP already admitted wrongdoing, although the company is challenging the extent of Oracle's claim for damages. Oracle is reportedly seeking $2 billion, whereas SAP argues that a settlement in the "tens of millions

of dollars, at most," would be fair.

Oracle also says that SAP has asked that each side in the case receive 20 hours to present their evidence and arguments. Both sides had previously agreed to a 36 hour limit for presenting their arguments, according to


In court documents, SAP voiced its desire for a "shortened and focused" trial. "This case has always been and should be about copyright damages; a case focused on that topic can be resolved in 20 hours per side, or less," explained SAP's attorney, in a letter to U.S. District Court judge Phyllis Hamilton. "It can also begin on November 1, as long as scheduled."


reports that, in response to SAP's move, Oracle has asked the judge to delay the start of the trial to Nov. 4 from Nov. 1.

"This eleventh-hour tactic and request to dramatically alter the scope, duration and ground rules of a trial scheduled to commence in just four days, after years of preparation, potentially requires the parties to completely reconstitute their evidentiary presentations, opening statements and arguments," said Oracle attorney Geoffrey Howard in a court filing.

--Written by James Rogers in New York.

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