Supreme Court Turns Down Appeal in Microsoft, Best Buy Case

The United States Supreme Court today rejected an appeal by Microsoft and Best Buy in an alleged racketeering lawsuit. The two companies had partnered in a joint venture aimed at getting consumers to sign up for MSN online service accounts when they bought computers at Best Buy stores.

In a class action lawsuit lead by James Odom, Odom claims that Best Buy had illegally provided his credit card information to Microsoft to begin charging him for an MSN Internet services account after a six month free trial period was over. The lawsuit alleges that this activity involved a fraudulant transfer of his personal information and violated RICO, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.

Microsoft had appealed to the Supeme Court to have the civil lawsuit dismissed. The Supreme Court let stand a ruling by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. That ruling by the San Franciso based court allows the civil suit to proceed.

The case is Microsoft Corp. v. Odom, 07-138.