N.D. Ga.

Consent Order Entered in Trade Secret Misappropriation Case

AES Clean Technology, Inc. v. Jefferson, Civil Action No. 1:21-cv-03633-MHC (N.D. Ga. May 5, 2022)

Plaintiff AES Clean Technology, Inc. filed suit against Defendant Derrick Jefferson on September 1, 2021 in the Northern District of Georgia (Atlanta Division). The Complaint alleged that Defendant misappropriated Plaintiff’s trade secrets while he was working for Plaintiff and prior to working for Plaintiff’s competitor, CleanSpace Modular, LLC. Specifically, the Complaint alleges that former employee Jefferson conspired with CleanSpace Modular to steal thousands of files from Plaintiff’s computer network including details concerning its manufacturing and design processes for its customized, sterile laboratory facilities (i.e., cleanrooms), ongoing and future projects, training documents, and capital improvement strategies and plans to solicit Plaintiff’s employees and unfairly compete against it in the marketplace. The Complaint asserts claims for (1) misappropriation of trade secrets under the federal Defend Trade Secrets Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1836 et seq., (2) misappropriation of trade secrets under the Georgia Trade Secrets Act, O.C.G.A. § 10-1-761, (3) conversion, (4) breach of duty of loyalty, and (5) computer theft in violation of O.C.G.A. § 16-9-90 et seq. Plaintiff moved for a preliminary injunction on September 24, 2021 seeking an order compelling Defendant to cease and desist from using Plaintiff’s trade secret information, return all of Plaintiff’s trade secret information in his possession, and refrain from conducting any business on behalf of, or providing services to, CleanSpace Modular.

On May 5, 2022, Judge Cohen entered a Consent Order enjoining Defendant from retaining any of Plaintiff’s property and information in his possession and ordering the return of any such property or information. The Order further enjoined Plaintiff from being employed by or performing any business for CleanSpace Modular, LLC.

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