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Measat Joins Satellite-TV Suit Against NDS Group

October 23, 2002|David Streitfeld | Times Staff Writer

SAN FRANCISCO -- Measat Broadcast Network Systems joined a lawsuit against NDS Group, a satellite-TV encryption company controlled by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp., according to filings Tuesday in U.S. District Court here.

Measat is a Malaysian operator with about 800,000 customers. None of its representatives could be reached for comment late Tuesday.

That makes four companies that are suing NDS for allegedly helping pirates undermine their systems. The others are U.S. system EchoStar Communications Corp., Swiss encryption developer Kudelski and French developer Canal Plus. Canal Plus plans to drop out of the suit as a result of a deal its parent Vivendi Universal made with News Corp.

The same allegations also have prompted a criminal probe by the U.S. attorney's office in San Diego, which this month subpoenaed documents from NDS' American headquarters in Newport Beach.

NDS has denied all charges in the case, which allege that it committed cyber-sabotage.

On Monday, NDS said it was suing DirecTV, the satellite TV system that its parent News Corp. had unsuccessfully tried to buy. The suit, which was filed under seal in Los Angeles and alleges misappropriation of trade secrets, is a response to a suit by DirecTV alleging that NDS misappropriated its trade secrets.

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