We previously wrote concerning a May 22, 2009 temporary restraining order (“TRO”) granted by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio against three former employees of UBS Financial Services Inc. (“UBS”), in effect pending an arbitration hearing before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”).
Under FINRA rules, a hearing on UBS’ requested injunctive relief would need to be held within 15 days of the date of the TRO, May 22, 2009.
Prior to that arbitration hearing, on June 3, 2009, UBS moved the District Court to expand the TRO and for a preliminary injunction on the basis of additional evidence, as detailed in UBS’ motion. On May 27, 2009, the individual defendants returned to UBS ten large plastic storage bins containing original hardcopy working files they removed from UBS, two laptop computers, a USB flash drive and other documents. The plastic storage bins alone contained roughly 350 original client files for customers the defendants serviced at UBS as well as prospects. These client files contained such sensitive information as original client contact notes and reports, client investment objectives, account numbers, social security numbers, legal documents such as powers of attorney, trust instruments, and several original signed client documents.
On the basis of UBS’ motion, the District Court granted UBS an expanded TRO. Where the earlier TRO enjoined defendants Timothy Lofton and Kyle Poland from soliciting business or otherwise initiating contact with any accounts transferred to them upon the retirement of defendant Shawn Anderson, the expanded TRO extended those prohibitions to any client of UBS whom they served or whose name became known to them while in the employ of UBS, and further prohibited them from any contact or communication with any client of UBS whose records or information they used in violation of their agreements with UBS and/or applicable Ohio law. The expanded TRO also barred Lofton and Poland from disclosing, transmitting, or destroying the information contained in the records of UBS or concerning its clients.
Also, where the previous TRO had called for all customer information in electronic form in defendants’ custody to be deleted by a “computer consultant agreed to by the parties,” the expanded TRO called for such deletion by a “UBS representative.”
The expanded TRO shows that even a plaintiff who has secured temporary injunctive relief from a court need not wait for a scheduled FINRA injunctive hearing if its business interests continue to be threatened in the interim.