Jackson sends case to Supreme Court

The judge in the US government's antitrust case against Microsoft sent the company's appeal on Tuesday directly to the US Supreme Court. The Supreme Court now must decide whether it will accept the case.

US District Court Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson's order also said that his June 7 judgment against the company to remedy antitrust violations is temporarily held pending a decision on Microsoft's appeal.

The appeal should go directly to the Supreme Court for immediate consideration because of the "general public importance" of resolving the case, Jackson said. On Monday, Microsoft argued against sending the case to the Supreme Court, saying there is no justification for sending the complex case to the high court.

But the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and 19 states had petitioned Jackson to send Microsoft's appeal directly to the Supreme Court, arguing that it is in the national interest to hear the appeal as soon as possible.

The Supreme Court might decide not to hear the case and send it back to the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, which on Monday made preparations to hear the case, but also said its activity would be moot if the Supreme Court decides to hear the appeal.

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