Zuckerberg Can Skip Testifying in Court Case, as Rough Week Ends
(Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc. endured an embarrassing outage and scathing whistle-blower testimony this week, but at least its chief executive won’t have to set foot in a San Francisco courtroom.
The first time Mark Zuckerberg testified at a trial in 2017 a Dallas jury socked the social media giant and its partners with $500 million in damages over the Oculus virtual-reality headset. Now, with Facebook again facing claims that its Oculus unit is using stolen technology, the company isn’t dispatching its founder to defend it in person. Instead, it’s having jurors listen to a transcript of Zuckerberg’s old testimony being read aloud.
The current case features different allegations by another company, but it covers some of the same ground: Facebook’s $2 billion acquisition of Oculus in 2014 from the colorful young entrepreneur Palmer Luckey.
Read More: Ex-Facebook VR Designer Tells Jury He Forged Contract Signatures
Faced with a request by Total Recall Technologies to get Zuckerberg on the record explaining the transaction in his prior testimony, Facebook’s lawyers objected to dredging up the past. U.S. District Judge William Alsup initially said: “Bring him in here.” The judge then went on to offer the company a choice: “You want him live so that it can be in this case, or do you want it in that case?” Facebook’s attorneys stopped pushing back. The trial is expected to wrap up Tuesday. Facebook declined to comment.
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