November 22, 2005
News Release 05-140
Inv. No. 337-TA-554
Contact: Peg O'Laughlin, 202-205-1819

ITC INSTITUTES SECTION 337 INVESTIGATION ON CERTAIN AXLE BEARING ASSEMBLIES, COMPONENTS THEREOF, AND PRODUCTS CONTAINING THE SAME

The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has voted to institute an investigation of certain axle bearing assemblies, components thereof, and products containing the same, which are used to support automobile wheels.

The investigation is based on a complaint filed by NTN Corporation of Japan on October 24, 2005. A supplement was filed on November 15, 2005. The complaint, as supplemented, alleges violations of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 in the importation into the United States, the sale for importation, and the sale within the United States after importation of certain axle bearing assemblies, components thereof, and products containing the same that infringe a patent owned by NTN Corporation. The complainant requests that the ITC issue an exclusion order and a cease and desist order.

The ITC has identified the following as respondents in this investigation:

By instituting this investigation (337-TA-554), the ITC has not yet made any decision on the merits of the case. The case will be referred to the Honorable Robert L. Barton, Jr., ITC administrative law judge, who will schedule and hold an evidentiary hearing. Judge Barton will make an initial determination as to whether there is a violation of section 337; that initial determination is subject to review by the Commission.

The ITC will make a final determination in the investigation at the earliest practicable time. Within 45 days after institution of the investigation, the ITC will set a target date for completing the investigation. ITC remedial orders in section 337 cases are effective when issued and become final 60 days after issuance unless disapproved for policy reasons by the U.S. Trade Representative within that 60-day period.

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