The opinion of the court was delivered by: Richard Mills, District Judge:
A case of intellectual property.
The specific issue is whether trade secrets were
In July of 1989, Glenayre Electronics, Ltd. (Glenayre)
purchased Quintron Corporation (Quintron) located in Quincy,
Illinois, which became known as Glenayre Quincy. Its primary
function was the development and manufacture of paging systems.
In fact, two years earlier, Quintron began negotiations with
SimulComm Partnership (SimulComm) for the acquisition or
license of technology related to paging systems known as SCS
During the negotiations in August of 1988, Joel Sandahl, the
managing director of SimulComm, left it and joined Quintron.
After Mr. Sandahl arrived at Quintron, a final licensing
agreement was executed whereby Quintron would be the exclusive
licensee of the SimulComm system. In January of 1990, Mr.
Sandahl left Quintron, along with two other engineers, and
formed Complex Systems (Complex). For approximately the next
six months, Mr. Sandahl, operating through Complex, continued
to provide consulting services to Glenayre.
As part of this process, several technical documents,
including patent applications, have been prepared by Glenayre's
personnel and patent counsel. Glenayre maintains that it has
not published or otherwise disseminated these documents or
materials; nevertheless, it believes that Defendants obtained
Glenayre's proprietary and trade secret information which they
could use to acquire a competitive advantage.
In fact, Complex is developing a new paging system referred
to as C-NET. At the time these proceedings were initiated,
Complex's design of the C-NET system was the subject of an
arbitration proceeding in Quincy, Illinois, between Glenayre
and Complex regarding Complex's alleged violation of its
noncompete agreement with Glenayre.
During a pre-trial hearing in relation to the arbitration
proceedings, Mr. Sandahl stated that an atto had examined both
the Glenayre and C-NET patent applications and found that
Glenayre's application was a "clone" of Complex's. It is this
event that led Glenayre to the conclusion that Complex somehow
obtained a copy of its confidential and proprietary information
relating to Omega Gold.
On April 3, 1992, Glenayre filed a complaint: Count I alleges
common law misappropriation of trade secrets; Count II asserts
a claim for statutory misappropriation of trade secrets; and
Count III alleges that Defendants tortiously interfered with
contractual relations. The Court granted the motion for a
preliminary injunction; however, it allowed both parties to
continue to pursue patent applications on the technology at
issue. On May 24, 1993, the parties stipulated to a dismissal
of Counts I and III. This cause is before the Court on
Defendants' motion for summary judgment on Count II of the
complaint, pursuant to Fed. R.Civ.P. 56.
Under Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c), summary judgment shall be granted
if the record shows that "there is no genuine issue as to any
material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a
judgment as a matter of law. Black v. Henry Pratt Co.,
778 F.2d 1278, 1281 (7th Cir. 1985). The moving party has the burden of
providing proper documentary evidence to show the absence of a
genuine issue of material fact. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett,
477 U.S. 317, 106 S.Ct. 2548, 91 L.Ed.2d 265 (1986). A genuine
issue of material fact exists when "there is sufficient
evidence favoring the nonmoving party for a jury to return a
verdict for that party." Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc.,
477 U.S. 242, 249, 106 S. Ct. 2505, 2511, 91 L. Ed.2d 202 (1986).
Unquestionably, in determining whether a genuine issue of
material fact exists, the evidence is to be taken in the light
most favorable to the nonmoving party. Adickes v. S.H. Kress &
Co., 398 U.S. 144, 90 S.Ct. 1598, 26 L.Ed.2d 142 (1970). Once
the moving party has met its burden, the opposing party must
come forward with specific evidence, not mere allegations or
denials of the pleadings, which demonstrates that there is a
genuine issue for trial. Howland v. Kilquist, 833 F.2d 639 (7th
Cir. 1987). "A scintilla of evidence in support of the
nonmovant's position is insufficient to successfully oppose
summary judgment; 'there must be evidence on which the jury
could reasonably find for the [nonmoving party].'" Brownell v.
Figel, 950 F.2d 1285 (7th Cir. 1991) (quoting Anderson v.
Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 251-52, 106 S.Ct. 2505,
2511-12, 91 L.Ed.2d 202 (1986)). Moreover, a party opposing a
motion for summary ...