Apple wins dismissal of lawsuit over MacBook logic boards

2016-07-04 15:39:06

Apple Inc won the dismissal on Thursday of a lawsuit accusing it of defrauding consumers by selling MacBook laptop computers that contained "logic boards" it knew were defective, and which routinely failed within two years.U.S. District Judge William Alsup in San Francisco said the plaintiffs, Uriel Marcus and Benedict Verceles, failed to show that Apple made "affirmative misrepresentations," despite citing online complaints and Apple marketing statements calling the laptops "state of the art" or the "most advanced" on the market."Plaintiffs have failed to allege that Apple's logic boards were unfit for their ordinary purposes or lacked a minimal level of quality," Alsup wrote. "Both plaintiffs were able to adequately use their computers for approximately 18 months and two years, respectively."Alsup gave the plaintiffs until Jan. 22 to amend their lawsuit, which sought class-action status, against the Cupertino, California-based company. Omar Rosales, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Apple did not immediately respond to a similar request.The plaintiffs claimed that Apple's sale of MacBooks since May 20, 2010, violated consumer protection laws in California and Texas, where the lawsuit began last May before being moved.They also contended that Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook was told about the defective logic boards in 2011, but did nothing. Logic boards contain computer circuitry and are sometimes known as motherboards.A separate and still pending lawsuit in California accuses Apple of defrauding consumers by selling MacBook Pro laptops in 2011 that contained defective graphic cards, causing screen distortions and system failures. MacBooks are part of Apple's Mac line of desktop and laptop computers. The company reported unit sales in that business of 18.91 million in its latest fiscal year.The case is Marcus et al v. Apple Inc, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, No. 14-03824. (Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York. Editing by Andre Grenon)

Djokovic makes solid start to Wimbledon title defense

2016-06-27 17:34:27

LONDON It was not quite the triple bagel that Novak Djokovic was aiming for during the opening 41 minutes of his first-round match but the Serbian is unlikely to be too disappointed after he beat Britain's James Ward 6-0 7-6(3) 6-4 at Wimbledon on Monday.The holder of all four grand slam titles appeared to be hurtling toward his 29th successive win at a major when he opened his Wimbledon defense by jumping out to a 6-0 3-0 lead.But Ward, the son of a London black cab driver, did not want to make a quick getaway on his Centre Court debut and held both arms aloft after finally getting a game against his name on the scoreboard. The 177th-ranked wildcard went on a roll as he won three games on the trot but despite his fightback, he simply did not have enough weapons to stop Djokovic from setting up a second- round showdown with Frenchman Adrian Mannarino. (Reporting by Pritha Sarkar, editing by Ed Osmond)

Tornado, hail storms kill at least 78 people in eastern China

2016-06-23 19:31:47

BEIJING A tornado, hail storms and driving rain killed at least 78 people and injured some 500 in eastern China on Thursday, flattening power lines, overturning cars and ripping roofs off houses in Jiangsu province.The storm struck mid-afternoon near Yancheng city, a few hours' drive north of China's commercial capital, Shanghai, the Ministry of Civil Affairs said.Winds of 125 km per hour (78 mph) battered several townships in Funing county, the official Xinhua news agency said. "I heard the gales and ran upstairs to shut the windows," Funing resident Xie Litian, 62, told Xinhua. "I had hardly reached the top of the stairs when I heard a boom and saw the entire wall with the windows on it torn away." When the storm subsided and Xie escaped, all the neighboring houses were gone. "It was like the end of the world," Xie said.Of the roughly 500 hurt about 200 have serious injuries. Power and communications are down in some areas and emergency supplies, including 1,000 tents, have been rushed to the scene, the civil affairs ministry said in a statement. Pictures posted online showed injured people lying amid destroyed houses, overturned cars, split tree trunks and broken power lines.The summer often brings severe weather to China. Severe floods in the south killed at least 22 people and left 20 missing earlier this week. Last June, a freak storm led to the sinking of a Yangtze River cruise ship that killed 442 people, many of them elderly tourists. Only 12 people survived when the Eastern Star capsized in what was China's worst shipping disaster in seven decades. (Reporting by Ben Blanchard and Chen Aizhu; Editing by Nick Macfie and Robin Pomeroy)

Wildfires in California, New Mexico trigger hundreds of evacuations

2016-06-17 04:27:21

LOS ANGELES Hundreds of people have evacuated to escape a wildfire in coastal Southern California and a larger blaze in rural New Mexico as hot weather feeds the flames, raising health concerns in other regions, officials said on Thursday.Santa Barbara Sheriff Bill Brown told a news conference his deputies had asked occupants of 400 homes and businesses to evacuate structures in areas threatened by flames from the California fire. Campers, and horses on ranches have also been forced out, officials said.The blaze, which ignited on Wednesday in a wilderness area northwest of Santa Barbara, has consumed chaparral and tall grass in the Los Padres National Forest, blackening some 1,200 acres (490 hectares), according to the InciWeb fire information center.About 500 firefighters were trying to hold it from exploding out of control as airplane tankers and helicopters dropped water, officials said."There isn't a lot of marine layer (ocean humidity) so not great conditions for firefighting," Diane Black, a joint incident command manager, said in a phone interview. Winds drove the so-called Sherpa Fire toward the Pacific coast, leading authorities to evacuate two state beaches and some ranch land, according InciWeb and the Santa Barbara County website.The blaze also approached the 101 Freeway overnight, forcing authorities to close it until Thursday morning.In New Mexico, the so-called Dog Head Fire which broke out on Wednesday about 6 miles (10 km) northwest of the town of Tajique has forced evacuations and grown to more than 12,000 acres (4,900 hectares). Tajique is around 30 miles southeast of Albuquerque. It has burned through timber in central New Mexico, pushing heavy smoke toward cities more than 100 miles (160 km) away as flames spread through a largely unpopulated area, fire information officer Peter D'Aquanni said in a phone interview.Torrance County Sheriff Heath White said his office was evacuating about 200 people. D'Aquanni said winds could shift the flames to the east as more than 600 firefighters tackle the blaze. "There's not many structures in front of that direction if it goes where we think it's going," he said.The National Weather Service (NWS) issued excessive heat warnings for areas in the U.S. southwest, including California, Nevada and Arizona. The NWS forecast office in Phoenix predicted temperatures as high as 119 degrees Fahrenheit (48.3 Celsius) in the coming days, which would exceed record highs.The NWS also issued heat advisories for Missouri and southwest Iowa, with temperatures in the mid-90s Fahrenheit (35 Celsius). (Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis and Curtis Skinner; Editing by James Dalgleish and Andrew Hay)

Non-profit for late caricaturist Al Hirschfeld sues NY gallery

2016-06-10 02:22:35

NEW YORK A non-profit that exhibits art by the late theater and screen caricaturist Al Hirschfeld has filed a lawsuit against a New York gallery that has long sold his work, court records on Wednesday showed.In a statement on its website, the Al Hirschfeld Foundation said it is ending its September 2000 agreement with Margo Feiden Galleries Ltd and Margo Feiden over the sale and exhibition of his works because they "have ceased operating in a manner consistent with the terms and spirit of the parties' agreement."The lawsuit was filed this month under seal in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan against the gallery and Feiden.A copy was not immediately available, but a judge on Wednesday ordered the complaint unsealed. Feiden had no immediate comment.Hirschfeld was known for inserting the name of his daughter Nina several times in his caricatures. Finding the Ninas became a popular pastime for many people, including the readers of The New York Times, which regularly published Hirschfeld's work. Hirschfeld died in 2003 at the age of 99. The non-profit was set up the next year to promote interest in the theater and dramatic arts, including by exhibiting Hirschfeld's works. (Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York, editing by G Crosse)

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