Microsoft founder Bill Gates will only make one trip to Iowa to testify in the state’s antitrust case against the computer giant. Des Moines attorney Roxanne Conlin is heading up the case, and says she’s decided to not take an opportunity to put gates on the stand as she presents her case.
Conlin says they decided not to call Gates and Microsoft C-E-O, Steve Ballmer, at this point to avoid confusing the jury as Conlin says Microsoft was going to try and “destroy or confuse” the case. Conlin says she can question Gates when he comes to Des Moines for the defense. Conlin says they’re patient and can wait for Gates to come to town.
Conlin says it’s a timing issue in how she presents the case, and says she’s not worried about Gates coming to Iowa. Conlin says it would be unusual for the defense lawyer to tell the jury Gates is coming and then not follow through. Conlin says the dates they were given to have Gates show up are too early in the case and would confuse things.
Conlin says she’ll use a taped deposition of Gates. Conlin says the court has allowed them to play Gate’s Department of Justice deposition and they’ll play that tape early on. Conlin doesn’t think the delay will hurt her case. Conlin says they feel they’ll be able to fully explore all the issues whenever Gates shows up.
Defense attorney Steve Aeschbacher says the change won’t matter to his case.
Aeschbacher says they don’t think the decision really changes anything as he says the defense has always planned for Gates to come to Des Moines and “tell the complete facts about stuff.”
Conlin says they’re alleging that Microsoft illegally overcharged for its software by keeping customers from having a choice of other software.