Theft of Coca-Cola trade secrets


Three people were charged in federal court with [tag]theft of confidential information[/tag] from The [tag]Coca-Cola[/tag] Co., which they tried to sell to competitor [tag]PepsiCo[/tag] Inc. The group includes Coke employee Joya Williams, an executive administrative assistant. The other two charged in the case are Ibrahim Dimson and Edmund Dhaney.

On May 19, [tag]Pepsi[/tag] provided to [tag]Coke[/tag] a copy of letter mailed to Pepsi in an official Coca-Cola envelope. The letter was postmarked in the Bronx, and purported to be from “Dirk”, a supposed high level employee of Coke with detailed confidential information. Coke then contacted the [tag]FBI[/tag] and an [tag]investigation[/tag] began.

An FBI [tag]undercover[/tag] agent received from “Dirk” 14 pages of confidential documents from Coke. Representatives from Coke confirmed that the documents were authentic, and did indeed contain highly confidential information considered to be [tag]trade secrets[/tag]. “Dirk’s” fee for the documents was $10,000, but he also agreed to receive $75,000 in exchange for a sample of the confidential new product.

The FBI went even further, offering “Dirk” $1.5 million for other Coke trade secrets. “Dirk” was actually Ibrahim Dimson. Joya Williams was caught by video surveillance cameras putting confidential documents on a new product into a personal bag. She was also taped holding a container with liquid in it, and putting it in her bag. Coke officials verified that it was, in fact, the confidential new product.

The suspects have been arrested on federal charges of wire fraud and unlawfully stealing and selling trade secrets.