EPLAW PATENT BLOG

UK – SmithKline Beecham v Apotex Europe Ltd

Posted: May 23rd, 2006

SmithKline Beecham plc and others v. Apotex Europe Ltd and others, Court of Appeal, London, UK, 23 May 2006, Case No. [2006] EWCA civ 658, with thanks to Marc Döring and Rowan Freeland, Simmons & Simmons

In patent infringement and revocation proceedings, SmithKline Beecham had been granted an interim injunction prohibiting Apotex Europe from dealing with the drug, paroxetine, in the UK. SmithKline Beecham had given a cross-undertaking to Apotex Europe (and its UK distributors).

The injunction was subsequently held to have been "wrongfully" granted. Apotex then sought to include two affiliate Canadian companies in the action and for them to gain the benefit of the cross-undertaking. At first instance, Apotex's arguments based on restitution and third party loss (under quasi-contractual principles) were struck out but an estoppel argument was upheld as arguable, if weak. Both sides appealed. The Court of Appeal dismissed Apotex's appeal on both counts and upheld SmithKline Beecham's appeal.

Read the extended summary (provided by Rowan Freeland) here.

Read the first instance decision (in English) here.
Read the appeal decision (in English) here.

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