February 5, 2016 7:18 am

Texas jury orders Apple to pay $625.6 million in patent case

Leading tech companies are rallying behind Apple - some belatedly - in its fight against a court order requiring the company to help investigators break into an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino mass shooters.

(AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)
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A federal jury in East Texas has ordered Apple to pay $625.6 million after finding that Apple services like FaceTime and iMessage infringed on technology patents held by Nevada patent-holding company VirnetX.

VirnetX had previously won a $368 million verdict against Apple on similar claims in 2012. That award was overturned by an appellate court, which ordered a new trial.

READ MORE: Apple files patent for technology to control touchscreen without touching it

While an attorney for VirnetX praised the verdict, Apple vowed to appeal and said the case shows a need for patent-system reform. Apple Inc. has won appeals in similar cases after losing in East Texas, which is known for large judgments in patent claims.

VirnetX is a company that buys technology patents and aims to make money from licensing fees and lawsuits. It has previously sued Microsoft, Cisco and others.

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