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European customs ordered to seize PlayStation 3 shipments

LG wins 10 day ban on importing consoles; two-three weeks worth of stock at retail

PlayStation 3 units imported into the UK and Europe will have to be seized by customs for at least 10 days, after electronics giant LG won a preliminary injunction against Sony.

The civil court in the Hague ruled in favour of LG over a dispute involving Blu-ray patents.

According to a report by The Guardian, tens of thousands of PlayStation units were seized in the Netherlands last week, leaving retailers and Sony in the UK with around two to three weeks worth of stock. Sony typically imports around 100,000 units a week.

Sony has the right to appeal to the European patents office to get the ban lifted, although LG has the option of extending the ban beyond 10 days. If Sony is found to have infringed LG's patents, it could be forced to pay compensation for every unit sold around the world.

LG has not commented on the situation, and Sony has only acknowledged that it is "looking into the matter."

Korean firm LG took action against Sony last month to have the PlayStation 3 banned in the US, along with Bravia televisions that feature Blu-ray support.

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Matt Martin avatar
Matt Martin: Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.
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