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Dispute stalls PS3 shipment in Netherlands

TOKYO, March 4, 2011 – Japanese electronics giant Sony said a shipment of its PlayStation 3 consoles is being held at a port in the Netherlands after a Dutch court upheld a complaint filed by South Korea\’s LG Electronics.

The shipment, reported to involve tens of thousands of consoles, has been held since February after the court handed down a temporary injunction over a patent claim, said Sony spokesman Yasuhiro Okada in Tokyo.

"The shipment has been stalled since late last month," Okada said, adding that the move came after LG filed a complaint that Sony violated its Blue-ray technologies.

He said that despite the Netherlands being one of Sony\’s major access points to Europe, the court decision has not affected its entire PS3 shipment to the market because "there are other entries to the region."

But the spokesman declined to elaborate further on when the company expects the shipment to be released or how many units would be affected due to the injunction.

The shipment being stalled involved tens of thousands of PS3 consoles, Dow Jones Newswires reported, citing a person familiar with the situation, adding that the court had handed down a 10-day injunction.

LG spokesman Kenneth Hong confirmed LG filed a patent complaint against Sony with the International Trade Commission in the United States earlier this year, which relates to its Blu-ray video technology used in PlayStation 3 machines.

But he said the company as a matter of policy could not comment on pending legal matters.

Hong said he is "not aware of any legal action which LG has taken in the Netherlands".

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