An appeals court today overturned an earlier decision to breakup software giant Microsoft. The appeals court also found that U.S. District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson improperly conducted himself in the case,
reports the Associated Press.
“We vacate the judgment on remedies, because the trial judge engaged in impermissible ex parte contacts by holding secret interviews with members of the media and made numerous offensive comments about Microsoft officials in public statements outside of the courtroom, giving rise to an appearance of partiality,” the court said.
“Although we find no evidence of actual bias, we hold that the actions of the trial judge seriously tainted the proceedings before the District Court and called into question the integrity of the judicial process,” the court added.
The case will now be sent back to a lower court — the appeals court also ordered that a new judge be assigned to the case.