Last April, a CSL Behring senior medical affairs director named Joseph Chiao began talking to another drug maker called Pharming about a job and, last month, accepted an offer. But before leaving CSL, he allegedly took more than 21,000 files from some 2,500 network folders containing a raft of information about product development, marketing strategies, and other key company data, according to a lawsuit filed by CSL.

In its lawsuit, CSL contended Chiao was recruited in order to steal valuable trade secrets and help Pharming in its quest to dominate the market for medicines treating hereditary angioedema, a rare disease that can cause pain and swelling in parts of the body. Chiao, who was hired by CSL three years ago, headed research in this area for the company and played a central role in developing strategies.

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