Economy

Waymo-Uber Trial Delayed Over Claims Of Hidden Evidence

Waymo-Uber Trial Delayed Over Claims Of Hidden Evidence

Waymo said that Uber intentionally hid key evidence in the case, and it needed more time to prepare for trial now that the evidence has come to light. Jacobs said the surveillance occurred overseas.

An Uber representative on Tuesday referred to an earlier company statement, which said Uber "has been waiting for its day in court for quite some time now" and was keen to have a jury hear the merits of the case.

U.S. District Judge William Alsup moved at a hearing Tuesday to immediately take witness testimony over what he described as potentially criminal conduct involving a hidden system of messaging at Uber.

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A federal criminal investigation into alleged espionage at Uber has indefinitely delayed a trial over whether the beleaguered ride-hailing service stole self-driving auto technology from Waymo, a spinoff from Google.

Waymo sued Uber, saying that they stole trade secrets about self-driving vehicle technology.

Waymo's lawsuit accusing Uber of stealing the technology had been scheduled to begin next Monday.

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Uber is accused of using cloak-and-dagger tactics.

Jacobs said that Uber reached a $4.5 million settlement, including a consulting contract, after he was sacked.

Jacobs took the stand to testify about the letter's statement that Uber's Marketplace Analytics "exists expressly for the objective of acquiring trade secrets, code-based & competitive intelligence", as Waymo lawyer Charles Verhoeven said, quoting from the letter.

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Under questioning, Richard Jacobs, Uber's manager of global intelligence, said that Uber hired several contractors that employed former CIA agents to help the ride-hailing service infiltrate its rivals' computers. Part of that settlement can be withheld if Jacobs violates a provision requiring him not to say anything that would harm Uber. Waymo said it learned of the new evidence last week after the U.S. Department of Justice shared it with Alsup. The case centers around former Google employee Anthony Levandowski, who allegedly stole 14,000 "highly confidential" files before leaving the company to start his own self-driving truck startup. Hackers stole the personal information of 57 million Uber users in October 2016, and Uber paid the hackers $100,000 to keep the theft secret. Governments across the globe have launched investigations into the incident.