Hilton Employees Accused of Espionage

by Alister POOLE on October 13, 2009

Hilton worldwide has been accused of corporate espionage in a case which claims that employees of the worldwide chain stole confidential documents from rival Starwood Hotels.  Currently several Hilton employees are being investigated for the criminal charges of corporate espionage , as well as a civil suit which has been filed by Starwood Hotels.  A federal grand jury is investigating claims that many former executives of Starwood stole confidential documents in order to present Hilton with a competitive advantage in their attempt to launch a hotel chain to rival Starwood’s W Hotels.

Starwood made these accusations during a civil suit that they launched in April.  Since then, the Department of Justice has gotten involved in an investigation which is expected to last two or three months.  The claim is that dozens of employees of Denizen, which is a hotel chain owned by Hilton, were involved in the theft of highly confidential corporate documents which belonged to Starwood.  Hilton has since fired over thirty employees from Denizen, many of who were formerly employed by Starwood.

The civil suit launched by Starwood claims that two high level former employees of their company took large amounts of information with them to Denizen.  The two executives, Ross Klein and Amar Lalvani are accused of stealing highly confidential corporate information from Starwood and then providing it to Hilton.

Starwood claims that the men not only stole information but were able to recruit Starwood employees to help them carry out the espionage.  They claim that the information the men stole, which was over one hundred thousand electronic documents, helped give Denizen a competitive edge over its rival.

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