MICROSOFT MAKES A CONSPIRACY PLAY.
Microsoft Corp made the opening splash in the second week of the antitrust trial by producing subpoenaed documents that the government had intended to use as exhibits during Jim Barksdale's redirect testimony, which starts today (Tuesday). Microsoft's lead defense attorney John Warden attempted to show that the infamous June 21 1995 meeting raised. In the words of Microsoft attorney Mike Marney "serious questions about the motives behind the Netscape, Department of Justice case." Marney used internal Netscape email and communications between Netscape executives and in-house attorneys and its legal firm, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati (WSGR) to suuport the claim. Marney claimed that the meeting had been a "set-up to try and lobby the government." In court, Warden produced an email containing notes from the meeting sent by Netscape's Mark Andreessen to Mitchell Baker, a Netscape in-house attorney, on the evening of the meeting. Warden asked Barksdale "Do you know why Mr Andreessen was sending these notes to Miss Baker just a little after 8 on the night of the meeting?" Barksdale replied that he didn't. Warden then produced a similar email that had been sent by Andreessen to David Killem at WSGR at 2:30am on June 22 1995, again Barksdale didn't know why Andreessen had sent themail. Finally, Warden produced a Civil Investigative Demand (CID) issued by the DoJ antitrust department and dated 10/22/95, signed by Joel Allen and a letter in response from WSGR, signed by Gary L. Reback, dated 10/23/95. Barksdale was as ked if he was "involved in anyway in the preparation" of the response, he replied "I don't think that I was." The Microsoft attorney claimed that the 21 June meeting was "held for the purpose of preparing" the response to the CID - a claim that Barksdale refuted as "absurd." Asked why the documents subpoenaed by Microsoft had not been produced as testimony by the Department of Justice before, chief prosecutor David Boies told reporters outside the courtroom that the Civil Investigative Demand (CID) was "not related to the investigation" but had been part of the earlier MSN case. The letter in response to the CID prepared by Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, was, according to Boises, only faxed to the DoJ last Friday and then subpoenaed by Microsoft on Saturday. Meanwhile, Netscape outside Counsel Christine Varney poured derision on Microsoft's claims saying that the firm had gone from "fantasy" to "conspiracy." She also said that the CID was "irrelevant" as Microsoft had been under continuous investigation by the DoJ during that period.
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|Date:||Oct 27, 1998|
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