The travails of one Sergey Aleynikov are well-known to trade secrets and competition lawyers like myself.
This is the ex-Goldman Sachs programmer who spurred litigation from Chicago to New York, eventually resulting in a criminal conviction that was later overturned by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in February.
Aleynikov's legal saga began when he misappropriated Goldman's proprietary software trading code and started work with a competitor in the high-frequency trading business, Teza Technologies.
Aleynikov is now suing Goldman to recoup his legal expenses through the concept of indemnification and advancement. Because Goldman's corporate bylaws require the firm to cover legal expenses for officers and directors, Aleynikov claims Goldman must pay the legal freight to defend charges - pursued by Goldman.
Indemnification and advancement are concepts that require attorneys to examine both state corporation law and corporate bylaws. There are many exceptions and ways for companies to avoid advancing fees and costs. Aleynikov believes that Goldman is required to, however, under the clear terms of Goldman's bylaws.
A copy of Aleynikov's federal complaint, filed in the District of New Jersey, can be found here and is embedded below:
Aleynikov v. Goldman Sachs Complaint (Indemnification and Advancement) (00136749)