Sprint loses in Maryland cellphone trafficking appeal

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A federal appeals court on Thursday threw out a US$26.9 million award in favor of Sprint Corp , in a setback to the company's years-long campaign ...

NEW YORK: A federal appeals court on Thursday threw out a US$26.9 million award in favor of Sprint Corp , in a setback to the company's years-long campaign to stop what it calls cellphone trafficking.

Sprint had accused the Odenton, Maryland-based company of wrongfully enticing customers still under contract with the mobile phone provider to sell their phones, and then reselling the phones at higher prices. The case concerned Sprint's contract with customers who buy"upgraded" phones at steep discounts, whose cost the Overland Park, Kansas-based company recoups through required service contracts that can last two years.Sprint claimed that resales cause harm because it loses money when it sells phones at loss-leader prices, and because customers may become dissatisfied if they sell upgraded phones with the latest technology and instead use older Sprint phones.

 

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