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By | Kieren McCarthy 12th October 2016 22:20

Oracle rip-off merchants Rimini Street fined another $28m, hit with permanent ban

Of course, it appeals Big Red's judgment and asks for stay

Rimini Street has been hit with yet another fine for infringing Oracle's copyright, as well as a permanent injunction barring it from providing any Oracle software to customers.

In a judgment [PDF] on Tuesday, a Nevada judge fined the company $27.7m in prejudgment interest – with more to come.

He also issued a permanent injunction [PDF] against Rimini Street that prevents it and CEO Seth Ravin from accessing any non-public part of Oracle's websites, downloading any of its software, and making any Oracle software available to others.

The decision follows an earlier one where Oracle was awarded $50m by a jury, as well as $46.2m in attorney fees.

Rimini Street immediately responded to the damning decision by appealing it and asking for a 60-day stay on the injunction so that appeal can be heard.

There is no love lost between the two companies. Oracle put out a blistering press release on the decision, noting the court had highlighted Rimini Street's "callous disregard for Oracle's copyrights and computer systems" and that its business model was "built entirely on its infringement of Oracle's copyrighted software and its improper access and downloading of data from Oracle's website and computer systems."

Oracle also suggested Rimini was playing games with the court and the tech industry: apparently, Rimini told its own customers the injunction would not impact its business and yet told the court the banning order would cause it "significant harm."

Clone wars

At the heart of the issue is Rimini Street's decision in 2010 to host Oracle software on its own servers – in violation of Oracle's licenses and copyright – as well as "clone" that software and make it available to multiple customers.

Rimini Street says that it no longer follows that approach, but such is the distrust and animosity between the two that Oracle has pushed for a legal block on the company, as well as its "subsidiaries, affiliates, employees, directors, officers, principals, and agents," to prevent it from ever being allowed access to its software again.

For its part, Rimini Street claims [PDF] that the injunction is too vague and "will cause irremediable harm to Rimini's client relationships." It also criticizes Oracle for its "aggressive and persistent distribution of 'Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt' (FUD) letters to Rimini's clients."

It argues that it is in the public interest that Rimini Street be allowed to continue selling Oracle software, arguing: "The public interest also favors robust and lawful competition. The injunction prohibits conduct beyond what is prohibited in many Oracle licenses, including conduct that is permitted."

Rimini Street's appeal will drag out the legal process and may allow it to continue on in business rather than effectively force it to shut down operations immediately. But with two firm judgments against the biz and with it heavily reliant on an IT goliath that has nothing but contempt for it and its CEO, it is likely to be only a matter of time before we see the end of Rimini Street. ®

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