Apple Loses Top Patent Lawyer

There will soon be a new iDeparture in Apple’s front office—and at a delicate time for the company. Richard “Chip” Lutton Jr. has been Apple’s chief patent officer, but is apparently leaving the company for reasons unknown. It’s not the best time for a change in Cupertino: Apple is in the midst of a thicket of lawsuits over the technology behind best-selling products like the iPhone and iPad involving other phone makers—especially those that use Google’s leading Android technology. Lutton will be replaced by BJ Watrous, a former lawyer for Hewlett-Packard.