Court Rules For Touradji On Ex-Employees' Computer Files

Aug 22 2012 | 11:51am ET

Touradji Capital Management has won the right to review a forensic report about two personal computers owned by a man seeking more than $25 million from the hedge fund.

A New York State appeals court overturned a lower-court ruling that found the reports, about Robert Vollero's personal laptops, were privileged and therefore did not have to be revealed to Touradji. Vollero and another former Touradji portfolio manager sued the hedge fund seeking more than $50 million in withheld bonuses; Touradji responded by accusing the two of "fraud," "mismanagement and utter disregard for the interests of the investors," and filed a countersuit accusing the two of stealing its proprietary information to found a rival firm.

Vollero's lawyers had a forensic specialist inventory the two computers that Touradji had sought to have examined. And they won a ruling in a lower court that found the reports to be privileged attorney work.

But the Appellate Division disagreed, ruling that only the "impressions, directions, etc., of counsel" were attorney work and that the lower court "should have conducted an in camera review to ascertain whether any portion of the reports is attorney work product," Law360 reports.

The three-judge panel ordered the lower court to hold such a review.

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