U.S. Software Firms Sue Alleged Pirates: Microsoft Corp., Lotus Development Corp. and Autodesk Inc. claim that five Beijing companies illegally copied, displayed and sold their software. The legal action, disclosed by the official newspaper China Daily, follows one of the first major moves by the government there against its alleged software pirates. The lawsuit charges that the U.S. companies lost millions of dollars in profits from 10 incidents of copyright infringement, the newspaper account said. The plaintiffs want between $10,000 and $30,000 for each copyright breach, but “total damages will be far higher,” said Stephanie Mitchell, vice president of the Business Software Alliance. The Washington-based group is representing the U.S. companies.