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Wednesday, April 25, 2012, 12:25 am PT (03:25 am ET)

Samsung in violation of court order to produce documents about Apple

A U.S. judge has ruled that Samsung is in violation of court orders requiring it to product documents mentioning Apple's products, as Apple seeks evidence that its rival infringed on its patents.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal sided with Apple earlier this week in a court determination against Samsung over the documents, Bloomberg reports. The order has prompted speculation that the documents could provide Apple with a "smoking gun" showing that the Korean handset maker willfully copied its competitor's designs.

“The scale of Samsung’s production and the burden placed on it by the compressed case schedule and the numerous claims at issue are not in doubt,” the judge wrote. “That burden, however, does not negate Samsung’s obligation to comply with no fewer than two court orders specifying the production of documents that reference Apple’s products.”

Grewal's order also imposed monetary sanctions on Samsung, though not all of the damages Apple sought were granted. According to the report, court filings did not indicate the amount of the sanctions.

A spokesman for Samsung said in a statement that the company will comply with the order. “Samsung will respond in accordance with the court’s order and produce the requested documentation within the timeframe provided,” said Adam Yates.

Since Apple filed suit against Samsung last April, the legal disagreement between the two companies has come to encompass more than 30 complaints across 10 countries. Most recently, Samsung filed a countersuit last week accusing Apple of violating eight of its patents.

The CEOs of the two companies agreed earlier this month to meet for moderated settlement talks in San Francisco, Calif., within the next 90 days.

Apple boss Tim Cook said on Tuesday that he would "highly prefer" to settle the lawsuits his company is waging against its rivals, but he also expressed a willingness to protect Apple's intellectual property.

"The key thing is that Apple not become the developer for the world, we need people to invent their own stuff," Cook said.