Letter from the U.S. prosecutors stimulated orders in court case of Self-Driving Car
This week as the judge issued a sequence of orders this week, encouraged by information shared by the U.S. Department of Justice with him. This was the same judge managing a lawsuit between Alphabet Inc’s Waymo self-driving car unit and Uber Technologies Inc. In San Francisco last week, the U.S. District Judge, William Alsup, revealed that he had got a letter from attorneys of Justice Department regarding the case, which is planned for testimony in December. The judge did not unveil the contents of the letter.
On the other hand, Alsup rolled out 2 successive orders, comprising one this week, which discussed some information. He instructed Uber to make 3 witnesses, including a company attorney and a former security analyst of Uber, available to be a witness at a final pretrial inquiry. Testimony is projected to start next month. It is strange for the Justice Department to share data with a judge days prior to a civil case is ready to start. Previously this year Alsup asked federal attorneys to examine if criminal burglary of trade secrets had happened. That probe is being controlled by the intellectual property department of the Northern California U.S. Attorney’s office, people well known with the move claimed. No charges have been issued up till now.
Executives for Uber, Waymo, and the Justice Department refused to answer to the media. The former security analyst of Uber could not be contacted for questions. Waymo took legal action against Uber in February, stating that Anthony Levandowski, the former executive of Waymo, downloaded over 14,000 secret files before exiting to establish a self-driving truck firm, dubbed Otto, which Uber obtained soon after. Uber refused using any of trade secrets from Waymo. Levandowski has refused to reply to the questions regarding the accusations, mentioning legal protections in opposition to self-incrimination.
Ever since the case started, Uber claimed that its employees have invested thousands of hours scouring its communications devices and other servers but have not hunted down trade secrets of Waymo. In an order last week, Alsup referred to a former security analyst of Uber in association with the letter from the office of the U.S. Attorney. He also referred the analyst to link with particular devices, which the former workers claimed were preserved by Uber. Alsup requested Uber to reveal whether it had hunted down those devices for applicable proof in the case. The media is also seeking to uphold public access to the testimony.