Uber-Waymo Trial Delayed Again Following Allegations of Rogue Conduct at Uber
- Author: Eleanor Harrison Nov 29, 2017,
Nov 29, 2017, 0:29
Waymo is now asking for further information from Uber and an investigation into the contents of Jacobs's letter, Gizmodo reports. U.S. District Judge William Alsup said he takes Jacobs' account seriously because prosecutors found it credible.
He also claimed that the team used a secretive messaging system on an anonymous server that would delete texts nearly immediately in order "to ensure we didn't create a paper trail that came back to haunt the company in any potential civil or criminal litigation". The delay of the trial, previously set to kick off December 4, came after Waymo filed a last-minute motion Monday that claimed Uber had "intentionally".
Alsup expressed his frustration with the company again on Tuesday.
Under questioning, Richard Jacobs, Uber's manager of global intelligence, said that Uber hired several contractors that employed former CIA agents to help the ride-hailing service infiltrate its rivals' computers. "I can't trust anything you say because it has been proven wrong so many times", Alsup told Uber attorney Arturo Gonzalez.
Jury selection was set to begin Wednesday in a case over Waymo's allegations that Uber stole trade secrets covering its autonomous driving technology.
Jacobs testified at the hearing that the letter contained allegations that Uber's markets analytics group "exists expressly for the goal for acquiring trade secrets, code base and competitive intelligence".
A California federal judge on Tuesday granted a request from Alphabet Inc.'s Waymo to postpone a hotly anticipated trade secrets trial against Uber Inc., following accusations that the ride-share giant hid evidence discovered by federal prosecutors. "If even half of what's in that letter is true, it would be a huge injustice to force Waymo to go to trial and not be able to prove the things said in that letter".
Waymo sued Uber in February, claiming that former Waymo executive Anthony Levandowski downloaded more than 14,000 confidential files before leaving to set up a self-driving truck company, called Otto, which Uber acquired soon after.
Uber has denied the allegations of theft. Levendowski left his role at Waymo in January 2016 to found another self-driving auto company called Otto, which was acquired by Uber in August 2016.