WASHINGTON: The judge hearing the Microsoft case on Wednesday turned down a request by the software giant to consider a motion to dismiss the government's proposal to break up the company, and moved immediately to consider antitrust remedies.
Microsoft Corp. lawyer John Warden said, as a hearing on remedies began, that
there were only two items on the agenda as far as he was concerned–the
company's proposal to strike down the government's plan to break up Microsoft,
and the schedule for further proceedings.
But Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson decided otherwise.
"I intend to proceed to the merits of the remedy," Jackson said
while rejecting the Microsoft approach. Wisconsin Assistant Attorney General
Kevin O'Connor then began arguing the government's case to break up the company.
The judge's decision was an early setback for Microsoft as the remedy phase
of its historic antitrust trial began. Jackson is considering a government
request to break the company into two after he found on April 3 that Microsoft
abused its monopoly power in personal computer operating systems. Microsoft has
proposed conduct restrictions instead.
(C) Reuters Limited 2000.