* Suit says Ernst & Young partner took over 20,000 pages of
* Claims the company sought to grow healthcare business
By Terry Baynes
Feb 19 A unit of Express Scripts Holding Co
has sued Ernst & Young and one of the
accounting firm's former partners for stealing trade secrets and
corporate data to boost Ernst & Young's own healthcare business.
The lawsuit, filed on Feb. 14 in state court in Clayton,
Missouri, claims that the former Ernst & Young partner, Donald
Gravlin, snuck into Express Scripts Inc's facilities over the
course of several months in 2012 to send confidential company
files to his private email account.
"E&Y and Gravlin were possessed with an evil motive," the
complaint said, requesting punitive damages to deter similar
conduct in the future.
The alleged theft occurred around the time Express Scripts
completed its $29 billion acquisition of Medco Health Solutions
Inc in April 2012, elevating Express Scripts into one of the
largest managers of prescription drug benefits for Americans.
Express Scripts and Medco contend that Ernst & Young should
be liable for Gravlin's conduct because he was acting for the
benefit of Ernst & Young. They accuse the accounting company of
seeking the data to develop additional business with Express
Scripts, Medco and their direct competitors.
Gravlin, a healthcare information technology partner, was
part of Ernst & Young's "core leadership team," the suit said.
He allegedly stole over 20,000 pages of documents containing
pricing information, business projections and strategy,
according to the complaint.
Ernst & Young spokeswoman Amy Call Well said the company
conducted an investigation after being notified of the
allegations, and found a violation of company policies. Gravlin
is no longer with the firm, and the company has since secured
Express Scripts' data, she said in an emailed statement.
"We believe that Ernst & Young's prompt action to secure the
data prevented any harm to Express Scripts Inc," she said,
adding that there was no evidence the data was transmitted to
any third party.
Donald Gravlin did not immediately respond to calls seeking
The complaint accuses Ernst & Young of violating trade
secret and state computer tampering laws and seeks, in addition
to damages, a court order barring the disclosure of the
The case is Express Scripts Inc et al v. Ernst & Young LLP,
Circuit Court, St. Louis County, Missouri, No. 13SL-CC00537.