HTC Corp. retaliated against Apple Inc. on Wednesday with its own patent infringement complaint — and the patents come from a surprising source.

Three of the five patents that HTC says Apple is infringing on with its iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch were owned by patent troll Saxon Innovations LLC. HTC, the Taiwanese Google-phone maker, appears to have gotten the IP as part of a settlement with Saxon in the spring of 2009. The other two are HTC patents, including one that was issued Tuesday, which helps explain the timing of the complaint.

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