Psystar Hit with New Discovery Deadlines

Unauthorized Mac clone maker Psystar couldn't convince the courts that its lack of business records was standard operating procedure, so now the company must produce a long list of documents by May 18. The court order, pending overseeing Judge Alsup's approval, comes after Apple claimed Psystar failed to provide requested information during discovery depositions in its lawsuit against the PC maker.

Apple and Psystar are currently fighting a legal battle over whether or not companies can sell PCs with Mac OS X installed. Apple asserts that any company wanting to sell Mac clones needs permission, and the Cupertino-based company has no plans to let companies sell PCs with Mac OS X installed. Psystar claims that Apple is overstepping its authority in enforcing copyrights.

In a letter to the court, Apple stated that Rudy Pedraza, Psystar's CEO, failed to answer discovery questions about 90 times after stating he didn't know or couldn't remember information about his company. According to the letter, Mr. Pedraza "stated approximately 90 times during the deposition that he did not know or recall answers to basic questions about Psystar's sales, its general costs and profits, its costs and profits by product line, [and] how it determines prices and profit margins."

Psystar, however, contended that since it isn't as big a company as Apple, it doesn't have the resources available for highly detailed accounting. The company also claimed that Apple has received more detailed information from third-party subpoenas, so it shouldn't need to provide additional data.

The court's May 18 deadline includes requirements that Psystar produce documents related to its June 2008 profit and loss statement, financial statements referenced in its opposition letter, records for the parts used to build its products, bank statements from April 2008 through September 2008, and the missing attachments from email records that have already been submitted to the court.

Psystar must also produce someone that's competent to testify about its financial records by June 3.

One attorney familiar with this type of case told TMO "The bottom line is that Judge Alsup was unpersuaded by Psystar's opposition to Apple's motion to compel and granted Apple pretty much everything that it was seeking in its motion."

The proposed order was prepared by Apple's legal team, most likely at the request of Judge Alsup. Assuming the order is in line with what the Judge requested, he will likely approve it in short order and start the countdown to the May 18 deadline.