Novell Unable to Persuade 21-Year-Old Holdout Juror in Its $1.2B Case Against Microsoft

Novell’s $1.2 billion lawsuit against Microsoft ended in a mistrial on Dec. 16 because of a 21-year-old holdout juror.

The holdout was security guard Corbyn Alvey, who has a two-year criminal justice degree, according to KSL.com and the Associated Press. Alvey told KSL there were too many inferences that needed to be drawn to support a verdict for Novell.

During the two-month trial, Novell had sought to prove Microsoft violated antitrust laws by withdrawing support for a feature on the Windows 95 operating system, forcing Novell to rewrite code for its WordPerfect software, the Salt Lake Tribune reports. As a result, Novell contended, it was late in getting its product to market, giving Microsoft Office a competitive edge. Novell claimed it was forced to sell WordPerfect at a loss of $1.2 billion.

Alvey told KSL he voted yes on the issue of whether Microsoft engaged in anti-competitive tactics, but voted no on the issue of whether Microsoft caused WordPerfect’s demise. “I want to make it clear the disagreements were based on valid opinions on both sides,” he said.

The Associated Press also has a story on the jury deadlock.

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