January 7, 2007
Dealing With Coke's Trade Secrets
Although two individuals plead guilty in the Coke trade secret case, a third remains for trial. The defendants were charged with trying to sell trade secrets to Pepsi for 1.5 million dollars (for background see here). The Atlanta Journal Constitution (AP) reports on an issue that has surfaced in the trial of the remaining defendant -- How do you try an individual for an attempted theft of a trade secret, but still maintain the secrecy of the trade secret? Congress considered this issue and legislation exists to allow secrecy of information during trial. But, it does require legal balancing, as on one hand the accused is entitled to confront the evidence against him or her, but on another hand people will not be able to be prosecuted if there is disclosure of trade secret information. The prosecution is using the Classified Information Procedures Act to assist in this regard.
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