ThinkMarkets agrees to discovery stay in lawsuit against ex-employee

TF Global Markets (Aust) Limited and ACG Management Solutions LLC (collectively, “ThinkMarkets”) and James Sorenson, who are embroiled in a trade secrets lawsuit in the United States, have provided a status update to the Illinois Northern District Court.

According to the Joint Status Report, filed on August 12, 2021, and seen by FX News Group, the parties have agreed on discovery stay.

ThinkMarkets informs the Court that it has decided to agree to the stay of all discovery pending the Court’s ruling on Sorenson’s Motion to Dismiss.

The plaintiffs note that they do not agree to stay third-party discovery only and oppose a partial stay. They will agree to a full stay pending the outcome of Sorenson’s motion to dismiss, which is precisely the relief Sorenson requested and has pursued for over three months.

Let’s recall that James Sorenson was employed by ThinkMarkets from December 14, 2015 through October 2, 2020, when he resigned to join IS Risk.

ThinkMarkets alleges that prior to his departure from ThinkMarkets, Sorenson exceeded his authorized access to ThinkMarkets’ computer systems and misappropriated ThinkMarkets’ trade secrets and confidential data for use at IS Risk. Also, ThinkMarkets alleges that, by virtue of his new position at IS Risk, his conduct at the time of his departure, and other facts pertinent to Sorenson’s departure and his new role at IS Risk, Sorenson has and/or will inevitably disclose ThinkMarkets’ trade secrets to IS Risk.

ThinkMarkets also claims that, for the benefit of IS Risk and to harm ThinkMarkets, Sorenson converted confidential data and communications divulging, among other things, sensitive litigation strategies and corporate practices. Sorenson is also accused of deleting an IT repository without authorization to cause harm to ThinkMarkets prior to his departure.

As FX News Group has reported, Sorenson denies each of ThinkMarkets’ allegations and has moved to dismiss the complaint. In particular, Sorenson denies that he converted anything or ever improperly accessed any data, systems, communications, or any other material.

The principal factual issues at this point are:

  • Whether Sorenson removed from and possessed any information belonging to ThinkMarkets after his resignation, and if so, whether such information is confidential, proprietary, or constitutes trade secrets.
  • Whether Sorenson exceeded his authorized access in order to obtain ThinkMarkets’ confidential information.
  • Whether Sorenson has disclosed ThinkMarkets’ privileged, confidential, and other protected information to IS Group or otherwise.
  • Whether and when Sorenson improperly deleted any confidential, proprietary, or trade secret information belonging to ThinkMarkets in his possession.
  • Whether ThinkMarkets suffered any damages as a result of any of Sorenson’s alleged conduct.

ThinkMarkets potentially seeks injunctive relief prohibiting Sorenson from using or disclosing ThinkMarkets’ confidential and trade secret information and an award of compensatory damages, double damages for willful misappropriation of trade secrets, punitive damages, costs, and attorneys’ fees. ThinkMarkets estimates its damages to exceed $500,000.

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