JACKSONVILLE — A mortgage firm has filed suit against a competitor and former employees who allegedly stole private information from the firm and began working for the competitor, luring away clients.

Caliber Home Loans Inc. filed a complaint Sept. 14 in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Jacksonville Division, against Brady Bales, Ariel Acosta and CMG Mortgage Inc., alleging that they violated the Defend Trade Secrets Act through the misappropriation of confidential and proprietary information.

According to the complaint, the plaintiff alleges that Caliber Home Loans Inc. has learned that its former employees, defendant Bales and defendant Acosta, are now working for its direct competitor in the mortgage industry, CMG Mortgage Inc. The plaintiff claims the defendants are executing a scheme to divert loan customers to their business by using the former employees' knowledge of the plaintiff's confidential information. As a result, the plaintiff has suffered from irreparable injury to its reputation and loss of business profit. 

The plaintiff holds Brady Bales, Ariel Acosta and CMG Mortgage Inc. responsible because the defendants allegedly obtained profit at the expense of the plaintiff and failed to fulfill their fiduciary obligation to preserve the plaintiff's trade secrets.

The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks to enjoin the defendants from hiring any of the plaintiff's current employees, from soliciting current or former customers, from using the plaintiff's confidential information, to return all copies of documents taken from the plaintiff, award compensatory damages, disgorgement of revenues, costs of suit, attorneys' fees and other remedies. It is represented by Robert B. Gough of Hill Ward Henderson Law in Tampa and Michael J. Fortunato and Edward J. Heffernan of Rubin, Fortunato & Harbison PC in Paoli, Pennsylvania.

U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Jacksonville Division, case number 3:16-cv-01167

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