Sony has reportedly won the release of a shipment of 300,000 PS3 units seized weeks ago as part of a patent dispute with South Korean electronics company LG over Blu-Ray technology licensing fees.
According to on-site reports from Dutch newspapers and gaming sites, a Hague District Court judge ruled in Sony's favor in an emergency appeal hearing brought by Sony, allowing the company to distribute the seized consoles across Europe as it sees fit.
The court order also precludes Dutch customs official from seizing any more systems pending further appeal by LG, clearing the way for 180,000 more PS3 units reportedly on their way to the country currently.
Sony's systems were seized without the company's knowledge
on February 28 after LG convinced a Breda District Court judge they had enough evidence to win a summary judgement against the company.
"The key reason for the court to lift the seizure order was that this kind of measure didn't seem fair given the history of negotiations between the parties," writes patent lawyer and blogger Florian Mueller
, based on reports from lawyers on the scene.
LG is seeking a license fee of at least $2.50 for every Blu-Ray device Sony has sold, including over 47 million PS3s. LG alleges Sony owes them at least $150 million for existing sales, and wants a guarantee of $350 million to cover future licensing.
A fuller patent violation suit brought by LG will be heard by the Dutch courts in November, according to Dutch paper De Telegraaf.