On Monday, October 27, 2014, a jury of twelve Delawareans returned a verdict in favor of Professional Investigating and Consulting Agency, Inc., d/b/a PICA Corp., against the Hewlett Packard Company. After a three week trial and two full days of deliberations, the jury found HP liable to PICA on two counts of misappropriation of trade secrets, one count of breaching the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, and one count of defamation. PICA filed its Complaint in June of 2012 in the Delaware Superior Court’s Complex Commercial Litigation Division (CCLD).
The claims centered on Hewlett Packard’s conduct towards PICA during PICA’s last year as a vendor providing anti-counterfeiting investigation and brand protection services to HP. At trial, PICA established that Hewlett Packard misappropriated its proprietary and unique “Channel Management Program,” which had been designed by PICA’s COO Rudy Diaz. Additionally, PICA established that Hewlett Packard misappropriated its proprietary and unique investigative system. PICA also established that HP breached the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing by abusing its discretion and forcing PICA to attend an unnecessary training session in Costa Rica. Finally, PICA established that HP defamed PICA at that Costa Rica training session.
The jury awarded PICA $6,518,000 in damages. The jury also found not only that had HP stolen PICA’s “Channel Management Program” but also that HP did so willfully and maliciously.
PICA was represented by Cooch and Taylor attorneys, Blake Bennett and Christopher Lee.