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Oracle v. Oregon: Round 1 of Lawsuit Goes to State

It’s beginning to feel as though Oracle (NYSE: ORCL) is spending as much time in the courtroom as the boardroom. Currently at the top of its docket: Oregon v. Oracle.

In the original case between the tech giant and Oregon, the state claimed that the botched creation of the Cover Oregon heath insurance exchange website — a $240 million fiasco that never reached fully operational status — was founder Larry Ellison and team’s fault. An accusation Oracle vehemently denies.

That lawsuit was initially filed in August 2014 by the state’s Department of Justice. Then, early this year, the legal waters got muddier after Oracle filed its own suit against Oregon. Oracle exec Ken Glueck claims that in October 2015, he and Brian Shipley, former chief of staff for Gov. Kate Brown, reached an agreement in which Oracle would provide $25 million worth of services and software in return for the state dropping its suit.

Brown and her team denied any agreement had been reached, and the legal battle continues. One of the first decisions in the case was handed down this week in Oregon’s favor. Oracle had asserted that emails were withheld in a way that violated public record laws, but the judge left little doubt as to his decision, saying “Oracle is wrong, both on the law and the facts.”

The battle with Oregon is one of several lawsuits Oracle has been involved in recently. It just lost a multibillion-dollar copyright infringement case to Android OS king Alphabet; and still faces a whistleblower lawsuit related to claims it was cooking its cloud books, and a shareholder lawsuit, among others.

Tim Brugger has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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