Law 360 reported today that, half-way through a five week trial, Mocrief Oil International, Inc. dropped its $1.36 billion theft of trade secrets lawsuit against Russia’s OAO Gazprom. The report states that Gazprom’s lawyers cross-examined Moncrief’s Chief Financial Officer last week and established that a key document upon which Moncrief based its case was fabricated. Moncrief’s CFO had testified that the document was created in 2004 and supported Moncrief’s claim that it disclosed trade secret information to Gazprom. Gazprom ‘s lawyer asserted during cross-examination that the document contained information that did not exist in 2004 because it was taken from a 2012 research paper.
This is the second Texas theft of trade secrets case in less than a year involving allegations of fake evidence. In May 2014, the lawyers representing the plaintiff who had obtained a $25 million verdict in a theft of trade secrets lawsuit withdrew from the case and stated that their client had relied upon false evidence and testimony. The plaintiff allegedly created a fake contract and forged emails to support its claims. You can view the defendants’ motion for sanctions in that case here.