Newport Beach, California (PRWEB) June 11, 2012
The Orange County Superior Court has issued a Restraining Order in favor of Custom Display Solutions (CDS) in Custom Display Solutions v. Advanced Mounting and Design, Inc., et al., O.C.S.C. Case No. 30-2012-00552440, enjoining Advanced Mounting and Design, Inc. (AMD) from use of CDS’s protected trade secrets. Terms of the Court’s order prohibits AMD from using or disseminating in any manner any and all information obtained from CDS concerning its methods and processes for manufacturing its products; using its customer lists; using its proposal quotations; using any CAD conceptual drawing or fabrication drawing obtained from CDS; and using any SolidWorks license registered to CDS. Plaintiff’s Complaint alleges unlawful misappropriation of trade secrets, interference with advantageous business relationships, conspiracy, breach of contract and other causes of action; CDS seeks compensatory and punitive damages.
The Court issued its restraining order after CDS filed a lawsuit in Orange County Superior Court against AMD for various acts of alleged wrongful conduct, including misappropriation of trade secrets by former employees of CDS in connection with the formation of AMD and seeking injunctive relief.
Founded in 2000, Plaintiff CDS is a manufacturer of custom displays, touch interactive displays, multi-media display furniture, display enclosures and display mounting systems for the audiovisual (A/V) industry. Custom displays include video walls, all types of front and rear projection display screen systems, and related products. Custom furniture designs include monitor consoles, lecterns, credenzas, VTC carts and other products. CDS developed certain trade secrets over several years with respect to its unique manufacturing process for mounting systems and related audiovisual products.
According to a Declaration filed by John Higgins, President and CEO of CDS, in late 2011, it was discovered at least four former employees of CDS had taken their employer’s confidential trade secrets and used that protected information in violation of executed Company non-disclosure agreements. After learning of the protected manufacturing process, those former employees left the employment of CDS and misappropriated protected Company information by commencing production of mounting equipment and related products using the manufacturing process which had been developed and maintained by CDS as a trade secret under the AMD business entity.
In addition, the former employees misappropriated the customer list of CDS in violation of their executed non-disclosure agreements when Defendants copied that list without permission or Company consent, left the employment of CDS, and solicited current and former confidential clientele of CDS with the exact same designs and models offered for sale by CDS under the AMD entity, according to Higgins’s testimony.
Since 2000, CDS had developed and maintained a customer list of nationwide and international purchasers of its audio visual equipment which contained information not generally known within the trade and which represented many years of research and client communications- the result of the expenditure and investment of a substantial amount of time, energy, and capital and resources on the part of CDS. That protected list established business relationships and contracts between customers and the Plaintiff that would normally continue unless interfered with, and CDS took specific precautionary measures to insure the customer list would remain privileged.
CDS had also amassed a library of thousands of CAD drawings of studies and projects- a resource for quickly evaluating the viability and cost of new products. When the individual Defendants formed AMD in 2011, they misappropriated the CAD designs and specifications of CDS by copying these materials without consent and utilizing these designs and specifications to prepare bid proposals for existing and current CDS customers.
The Complaint also alleged that the former employees had made unauthorized use of a SolidWorks design software license registered to CDS to create computer aided design renderings of potential projects, in addition to detailed drawings for fabrication.
The Superior Court, in recognizing that the probable relative harm to Plaintiff justified the issuance of the preliminary injunction and acknowledging that Defendants had sought out the same contracts for which they had previously submitted bids while employees of CDS in its May 15, 2012 ruling, formally issued its restraining order on May 22, 2012 against AMD and all individual Defendants.
Immediately following its court filing of suit, CDS sought judicial relief for a preliminary injunction and temporary restraining order against AMD and the individual Defendants. On May 15, 2012, the Court granted Plaintiff’s Motion for Preliminary Injunction and consequently prohibited Defendants AMD and the individual former CDS employees from using that confidential information to solicit the clientele of Plaintiff.
CDS President and CEO John Higgins reported “We are very pleased to announce that the Court has agreed with our position and ruled to reaffirm our position through the issuance of this restraining order. Every American has the right to start his or her own business; however, this does not mean that anyone can launch a business through the unlawful misappropriation of years of another company’s deeply invested effort and resources. No person has the right to misuse the hard work of his or her former employer by resorting to unfair and illegal business practices.”
“Through the coordinated undertaking of decisive and swift legal measures, Custom Display Solutions has undoubtedly prevailed against the unlawful practices of its former employees,” explains Newport Beach attorney Russell J. Thomas, Jr., who represents CDS in its lawsuit.
About Custom Display Solutions (CDS), Inc.
Founded in 2000, CDS, Inc. designs and fabricates custom display systems, touch interactive displays, multi-media furniture, display enclosures and custom mounting systems of all kinds for the audio-visual (A/V) industry. Custom displays include video walls, monitor walls, front and rear projection systems and related products. Custom furniture designs include monitor consoles, monitor credenzas, VTC carts, teaching stations and anything else CDS clients want (http://www.cds4av.com).
About the Law Office of Russell J. Thomas, Jr.
The Newport Beach Law Office of Russell J. Thomas, Jr. provides creative solutions to today’s workplace challenges faced by human resource departments, business managers and corporate level management. Mr. Thomas received his undergraduate and JD degrees from Harvard University, and he has practiced employment and labor law for over thirty years. Primary specialization areas include litigation, counseling, and representation in state and federal courts and before state and federal administrative agencies. His thorough understanding of California law and policies has helped employers avoid costly mistakes for decades. Detailed information about the firm is available at http://www.EmplmntAttorney.com. Follow on Twitter @EmplmntAttorney and http://www.Facebook.com/EmplmntAttorney for practical advice relating to business and employment litigation.