A preliminary injunction has been issued against a former employee and her consultants by the paparazzi.
According to their original complaint, former employee Melissa Sorenson, aided by former consultant Geraldine Souza, attempted to halt Paparazzi.
Sorenson obtained and continued to acquire confidential material by unlawful access in order to keep it from being disclosed. Sorenson then shared the information with a former distributor’s Facebook group.
On May 20th, an injunction hearing was convened after obtaining a Temporary Restraining Order forbidding the conduct.
The court granted Paparazzi’s requested preliminary injunction, noting that all defendants save Burgess were present and that none of them had legal representation.
The following is the explanation for the court’s ruling, which summarizes various key factors:
“Following a review of Paparazzi’s arguments in its briefing and at the hearing, as well as the defendants’ responses, it is clear that Paparazzi has demonstrated a substantial likelihood of success on the merits of its breach of contract claim, which serves as the foundation for preliminary injunctive relief. Without injunctive relief, the paparazzi have proven the probability of irreparable harm. Because Paparazzi’s confidential information has been acquired and distributed, urgent action is required. Confidential information is difficult to safeguard and recover once it has been spread. Furthermore, the defendants’ exposure of confidential material has caused Paparazzi’s reputational harm that cannot be compensated for with monetary damages. Paparazzi faces a continued erosion of its business reputation among consultants and customers, as well as the risk of losing business advantages if competitors use Paparazzi’s proprietary confidential information, as well as the real possibility that consultants will end their relationships with the company. Sorenson signed a formal confidentiality agreement with Paparazzi to preserve its confidential information and company. Contract rights, particularly confidentiality agreements, are important to the public. Protecting secret company information and firm reputations is likewise important to the general public. This factor favors the Paparazzi being granted injunctive relief. The previously issued TRO becomes permanent as a result of the preliminary injunction.”
Specifically, defendants are banned from accessing and/or sharing Paparazzi’s confidential information.
I expect settlements to be announced at some point, given that the defendants don’t appear to be interested in fighting the case. I don’t think this case will get to trial.