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Bassford Remele is a full-service litigation firm that devotes its practice exclusively to providing trial and appellate repreesntation for local, national, and international clients in a wide array of business litigation.

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Minnesota Supreme Court Affirms $800 Million Arbitration Award for Bassford Remele Client

Date: October 31, 2014 — Minneapolis, MN  

On October 8, 2014, the Minnesota Supreme Court affirmed an Arbitration Award giving Bassford client Seagate Technology, LLC over $800 Million in damages and interest.  Seagate brought a trade secret claim against a former Seagate employee, Dr. Sining Mao, and Mao’s new employer, Western Digital Corporation.  Dr. Mao, who led Seagate’s development of a new generation of read/write heads for its industry-leading hard drives, took a position with Western Digital where the disclosure of Seagate’s technology was inevitable.  The evidence showed that Dr. Mao in fact used Seagate materials to train Western Digital’s engineers to use the new technology.

Bassford lawyers also proved that Dr. Mao fabricated evidence in an attempt to make it look like Seagate’s trade secrets had been publicly presented before he left Seagate.  As a sanction for the fabrication, the arbitrator resolved liability issues on three trade secrets in favor of Seagate.  The Supreme Court held that he had a right to do so under arbitration law and the parties’ agreements.

The arbitrator awarded Seagate $525 million for the damages caused by the misappropriation of its trade secrets.  At the time of the award, interest had increased that amount to over $630 Million.  Post award interest made the total value over $800 million at the time of the Supreme Court decision.

Bassford Remele attorneys Lewis A. Remele, Jr., Frederick E. Finch, Jan M Gunderson, Mark R. Bradford and Jeffrey R. Mulder represented Seagate at trial and on appeal. They were assisted on appeal by attorney Robert N. Hochmann, Sidley Austin, LLP.

Bassford Remele, A Professional Association, is a full-service litigation firm located in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Founded in 1882, the firm represents local, national, and international clients in all areas of civil litigation and dispute resolution. The Bassford firm is a community of experienced and committed trial lawyers who embrace a professional approach to the practice of law, providing the highest level of legal expertise and advice.

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