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Disgruntled inventor's $500-million verdict against California tax collectors cut to $50,000

Disgruntled inventor's $500-million verdict against California tax collectors cut to $50,000

The Supreme Court has shielded California and its taxpayers from "hostile" juries in neighboring Nevada who have been willing to hand down big verdicts on behalf of those who fled California in search of lower taxes.

The 6-2 decision threw out of most of a $500-million verdict won by a disgruntled inventor who left for Nevada decades ago and then sued California's tax collectors for harassment.

Nevada's willingness to uphold such big verdicts against California "reflects a policy of hostility ... to a sister state," said Justice Stephen G. Breyer.

The decision upheld $50,000 of the once huge verdict -- just 0.01% of the original total -- in favor of...

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