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Motorola Sues RIM for Poaching Staff

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Motorola is suing rival handset manufacturer, Research in Motion after it claimed that company has been poaching its staff. The lawsuit, filed last week says that RIM lured away some 40 of its employees in Florida since the beginning of this year.

In the paperwork, Motorola says that RIM is violating a non-solicitation contract the two companies signed when Motorola announced plans to spin off its handset business as a separate company. In the court filing, Motorola included copies of emails which it says had been sent by RIM to its employees offering the jobs.

The company is concerned that the employees cannot work for RIM without disclosing confidential Motorola industrial secrets.

"Motorola is threatened with losing customers, employees, technology, its competitive advantage, its trade secrets and goodwill in amounts which may be impossible to determine," the company said in the court filing.

However, the company is seeking token damages of just US$50,000.

Earlier this year, Motorola sued Apple after former Mobile Devices executive, Mike Fenger jumped to the company to head up its iPhone sales.

Motorola is already suing RIM for allegedly infringing seven US patents covering mobile-communications technology. RIM has however counter sued Motorola in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas accusing Motorola of "anti-competitive conduct" by demanding "unreasonable" royalties for several patents Motorola owns and RIM currently licenses.

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Tags: iphone  motorola  apple  texas  rim  patents  research in motion  seven  florida