Blank Rome Secures Defense Victory in Trade Secrets and RICO Jury Trial in California
A Blank Rome team won a jury verdict following a six-day jury trial in the United States District Court for the Central District of California. The verdict was returned on August 29, 2023.
In the case of Skye Orthobiologics, LLC, et al. v. CTM Biomedical, LLC, et al., the plaintiffs asserted various claims against six defendants, including claims under the Defend Trade Secrets Act (“DTSA”) and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”) arising out of the manufacture, sale, and distribution of certain biotechnology products. After obtaining a favorable partial summary judgment ruling on behalf of its client, Mike Stumpe, Blank Rome proceeded to defend Mr. Stumpe at trial on claims that he violated the DTSA and RICO in allegedly using or disclosing the plaintiff’s trade secret information to sell biotechnology products in favor of one of the defendants. In allegedly engaging in this conduct, Plaintiff also accused Mr. Stumpe (and others) of engaging in a conspiracy to violate RICO.
Following the six-day jury trial and one day of deliberations, the jury (while finding in favor of plaintiffs vis-à-vis three other defendants) wholly rejected the claims against Mr. Stumpe, awarding Mr. Stumpe a full and complete defense verdict. This was a heavily contested and hard-fought case, which garnered some local media attention. Blank Rome played a pivotal role throughout the case and at trial on its client’s behalf as well as in its joint defense role in the case.