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Camera maker Arri denies rival’s espionage claims

Lawsuit response asserts Arri had no involvement in exec's actions

Facing charges of industrial espionage and theft of trade secrets in a lawsuit from rival Red, camera maker Arri has denied the allegations and asserts that Red is using the legal action to obtain Arri’s trade secrets.

The response to Red’s lawsuit was filed Tuesday in federal court in Orange County.

Red’s suit arose in part from a criminal case in which former Arri VP of market development Michael Bravin pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of illegally obtaining emails of Band Pro chief executive Amnon Band. The theft occurred at a time when Band Pro was sharing information with Red. (Daily Variety, Dec. 29).

In its complaint, Red alleged that the emails were stolen with the knowledge and approval of Arri execs and that Bravin shared that information with the Arri team, letting Arri get to market with its Alexa ahead of Red’s release of its Epic camera.

In its answer, Arri denies its executives knew of or approved Bravin’s theft of Band’s emails, denies Bravin shared those emails with its team, and and “specifically denies that any action of Bravin constituted corporate espionage on the part of Arri.”

The response asserts that “Arri required no information from Red to bring the Arri Alexa to market” ahead of the Red Epic.

Arri also denies that it “knew of, approved of, intended to benefit from, or did benefit from Bravin’s alleged actions.” The document also denies Red’s charges of false advertising.

Red has asked for an injunction requiring “disclosure and return of all trade secrets to Red.” In its answer, Arri asserts “Red’s improper purposes in seeking an injunction are obtain Arri’s trade secrets regarding the Alexa and to restrain Arri from competing with RED on the basis of Alexa’s superior camera technology.”