The Press (New Zealand), Sep. 10, 2002
Lawyers acting for a Sydney plastics manufacturer have invoked its worldwide patents in an attempt to stop a proposed Hokitika plastics venture.
A fraud investigation is being called for after claims by Armacel Pty Ltd that the Hokitika initiative, led by FT Manufacturing, is planning to use technology it does not own.
The claim has been referred to the Serious Fraud Office.
Two of the key figures in the Hokitika project, Ian Pitts and Tim Redmond, both of Sydney, worked for Armacel managing director and the patent-registered inventor Frank Matich in the mid-1990s.
They later worked for another company that admitted in January 2001 to using Armacel plastics technology without a licence.
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Armacel lawyers say they now suspect FT is exploiting technology protected by the Armacel patents.
They have given FT 14 days to prove it has not infringed the patents or intellectual property owned by Armacel.
If an infringement is proved, Armacel could prevent the manufacture and export of products.
Last week, a company closely linked to some of those associated with FT Manufacturing was wound up in Sydney owing millions of dollars. Criminal charges may follow.