Several technology goliaths, including Apple, Intel, and Google, are being accused of high-tech hijinks in a California class action lawsuit. The suit accuses the firms of running afoul of antitrust laws by allegedly conspiring to fix employee pay. The lawsuit also accuses the technology firms of entering into "No Solicitation" agreements with one another. The complaint, which was filed on behalf of Siddharth Hariharan, a former software engineer at Lucasfilm and founder and CEO of InEarth, seeks restitution for lost compensation and treble damages.
"My colleagues at Lucasfilm and I applied our skills, knowledge, and creativity to make the company an industry leader," stated Mr. Hariharan . "It's disappointing that, while we were working hard to make terrific products that resulted in enormous profits for Lucasfilm, senior executives of the company cut deals with other premiere high tech companies to eliminate competition and cap pay for skilled employees."
Josepth Saveria of the national plaintiffs' law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, "estimate that because of reducted competition for their services, compensation for skilled employees at Adobe, Apple, Google, Intel, Intuit, Lucasfilm, and Pixar was reduced by 10 to 15 percent."
Not by coincidence, the companies mentioned are the same ones that were targeted by a 2009 antitrust investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice, CNet reports . The investigation and subsequent civil lawsuit were settled in September of last year, with the companies agreeing to discontinue the use of "do not cold call" lists.
Image Credit: Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP