Allegations that the firm transferred patents via a shell company in order to avoid public backlash.

Apple uses ‘patent troll’ to go after rivals says report

Apple has transferred a set of mobile phone related patents to a ‘patent troll’ via a shell company in order to pursue claims against most smartphone vendors according to a new TechCrunch report.

In what is most likely an attempt to batter rivals while attempting to escape the tarnished image of yet more courtroom competition in the mobile industry, TechCrunch said that Apple has transferred a dozen patents to a firm known as Cliff Island LLC.

Cliff Island then transferred at least two to Digitude, in a move which TechCrunch speculated could be "using Digitude as a hired gun of sorts in its patent offensive, giving the company valuable patents to wield against its opponents while avoiding the waves of press that are spurred by each new lawsuit."

Digitude Innovations, or perhaps more accurately "Acquisitions", filed suit with the ITC alleging the usual patent infringement against a raft of mobile firms including HTC, LG, Motorola, RIM, Samsung, Sony, Amazon and Nokia.

The ITC has the power to block imports in the US so favorable outcomes are usually a meal ticket for large settlements at the very least.

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