(Reuters) — Uber mentioned it by no means instructed a self-driving automotive government to obtain recordsdata from his former employer, Alphabet’s Waymo unit, in accordance with a court docket submitting in a contentious commerce secret lawsuit.
Alphabet’s Waymo claimed in a lawsuit earlier this yr that Anthony Levandowski downloaded greater than 14,000 confidential recordsdata earlier than leaving to arrange a self-driving truck firm, which Uber acquired quickly after.
Uber has fired Levandowski. He isn’t a defendant within the case, however his actions, and what Uber executives knew about them, are on the center of Waymo’s lawsuit. Uber denies it used any of Waymo’s commerce secrets and techniques. A trial is scheduled for October.
In a court docket submitting on Wednesday, Uber mentioned Levandowski’s downloads had nothing to do along with his future employment at Uber.
“This is consistent with the complete lack of evidence that such files exist at, or have ever been used by, Uber,” the corporate mentioned.
As a substitute, Uber mentioned it believes Levandowski took the recordsdata to make sure an anticipated $120 million bonus cost from Waymo. Uber didn’t detail the way it believes the downloads would have helped Levandowski accomplish that goal.
At one level whereas Uber was negotiating to purchase Levandowski’s firm, Levandowski instructed Uber executives together with former CEO Travis Kalanick that he discovered 5 discs in his house that contained Google info.
“Kalanick emphatically told Levandowski that Uber did not want any such information,” Uber mentioned within the court docket submitting, including Levandowski mentioned he destroyed the discs.
In a separate court docket submitting, Waymo mentioned the incident with the discs proved Uber executives knew he possessed Google info earlier than he got here to Uber.
“And even after finding out that he had Waymo materials in his possession … Uber never took any steps to prohibit Levandowski from using his ‘treasure trove of files’ in his work at Uber,” Waymo mentioned.
Waymo additionally mentioned it has not been capable of overview all of the correspondence Levandowski had with Uber executives. As an example, Waymo mentioned it couldn’t discover textual content messages from Kalanick to Levandowski although it did discover messages from Levandowski to Kalanick, “suggesting that the former were deleted.”
Uber had hoped Levandowski, one essentially the most revered self-driving engineers in Silicon Valley, would assist the journey companies firm catch as much as rivals, together with Waymo, within the race for self-driving know-how.
(Reporting by Dan Levine; Enhancing by David Gregorio)