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Apple Inc, Google Inc Won't Face Poaching Class Action Suit, Yet And Defendants Includes Adobe Systems Inc, Intel Corp, Intuit Inc, And Walt Disney Co's Lucasfilm Ltd-Reuters

Friday, 5 Apr 2013 02:40pm EDT 

Reuters reported that a U.S. judge ruled that a lawsuit alleging a broad conspiracy among Silicon Valley companies not to poach each other's employees cannot proceed as a class action for now, but left the door open for workers to eventually sue as a group. In a decision released on Friday, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California said the five software engineers suing Apple Inc, Google Inc and five other companies have yet to show enough in common among the proposed class members to allow them to sue together. But in deciding to give the plaintiffs another chance, the federal judge said she was 'keenly aware' new evidence had recently become available that could support class certification. She also said the nature of the 'alleged overarching conspiracy' and desire to litigate it all at once weighed 'heavily' in favor of certifying a class, which the plaintiffs' lawyers have said could include tens of thousands of people. If the plaintiffs win class certification, then they would have more leverage to extract large financial settlements than if they were to sue individually. Other defendants in the case include Adobe Systems Inc, Intel Corp, Intuit Inc, and Walt Disney Co's Lucasfilm Ltd and Pixar units. The defendants were accused of violating the Sherman Act and Clayton Act antitrust laws by conspiring to eliminate competition for labor, depriving workers of job mobility and hundreds of millions of dollars of compensation. 

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