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Micron Tech., Inc. v. United Microelectronics Corp.

United States District Court for the Northern District of California

January 18, 2019, Decided; January 18, 2019, Filed

Case No. 17-cv-06932-MMC

Opinion

ORDER GRANTING JINHUA'S MOTION TO DISMISS; AFFORDING PLAINTIFF LEAVE TO FILE AMENDED COMPLAINT

Re: Dkt. No. 106

Before the Court is defendant Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit Co., Ltd.'s ("Jinhua") "Motion to Dismiss for Insufficient Process and for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction," filed October 2, 2018. Plaintiff Micron Technology, Inc. ("Micron") has filed opposition, to which Jinhua has replied. Having read and considered the papers filed in support of and in opposition to the motion, the Court rules as follows.1

BACKGROUND

In its complaint, Micron alleges it is a "semiconductor-producing compan[y]" with a "portfolio of high performance memory technologies" including "Dynamic Random Access Memory ('DRAM') integrated circuits" (see Compl. ¶¶ 1, 4, 5), that defendant United Microelectronics Corporation ("UMC") is a "semiconductor foundry" (see Compl. ¶ 2), and that Jinhua is a "company founded in Mainland China" that "plans to be in commercial DRAM production" (see Compl. ¶ 8).

According [*3]  to Micron, UMC and Jinhua "executed a deal," under which UMC, although it "lack[ed] any significant, independent intellectual property in advanced DRAM technology," would "provide Jinhua with DRAM process technology and enable Jinhua to become a leading force in the DRAM business." (See Compl. ¶ 2.) Micron alleges that UMC and Jinhua "developed and set in motion a plan for UMC to recruit key personnel from Micron's Taiwanese affiliate," Micron Memory Taiwan Co., Ltd. ("MMT"'). (See Compl. ¶ 2.a.) In particular, Micron alleges that "UMC and Jinhua conspired to induce former MMT employees to misappropriate electronic and paper files containing Micron trade secrets from MMT and to deliver those trade secrets to UMC" (see Compl. ¶ 2.b), that UCM then "recruit[ed] various MMT personnel with access to Micron trade secrets" (see Compl. ¶ 25), that two MMT employees, prior to resigning from MMT and beginning employment with UMC, took from Micron trade secrets at the "direct[ion]" of UMC (see Compl. ¶¶ 10-12), and that UMC "incorporated Micron's trade secrets into technologies that it transferred and/or plans to transfer to Jinhua" (see Compl. ¶ 2.c).

Based on the above allegations, Micron alleges [*4]  against UMC and Jinhua the following four causes of action: (1) Count I, titled "Misappropriation of Trade Secrets Under the Defend Trade Secrets Act[,] 18 U.S.C. § 1836(b)," (2) Count II, titled "Civil RICO[,] 18 U.S.C. § 1962(c)," (3) Count III, titled "Civil RICO [,] 18 U.S.C. § 1962(d)," and (4) Count IV, titled "Trade Secret Misappropriation Under the California Uniform Trade Secrets Act[,] Cal. Civ. Code § 3426."

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2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9408 *; 2019 WL 266518

MICRON TECHNOLOGY, INC., Plaintiff, v. UNITED MICROELECTRONICS CORPORATION, et al., Defendants.

Prior History: Micron Tech., Inc. v. United Microelectronics Corp., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 198125 (N.D. Cal., Nov. 20, 2018)

CORE TERMS

personal jurisdiction, allegations, trade secret, misappropriation, technology, argues, patent, employees, asserts