In August 2022, DisputeSoft was engaged by Serrala US Corporation as software experts in the matter of Serrala US Corporation v. James Paschke and Paschke Consulting, Inc.
DisputeSoft was asked to assist in this lawsuit before the United States District Court for the District of Florida involving claims of trade secret misappropriation, copyright infringement, and breach of contract.
Mr. Paschke joined Serrala as an SAP Data Archiving Consultant in March 2007. Mr. Paschke’s responsibilities included designing and implementing SAP data archiving solutions for Serrala’s existing clients, serving as a Product Manager for Serrala’s data archiving products, and supporting the development of new client relationships.
As part of this employment arrangement, Mr. Paschke agreed to maintain the confidentiality of Serrala’s proprietary information, disclose any existing inventions, assign to Serrala the rights to any inventions created during the employment period, and return all equipment belonging to Serrala upon leaving the company.
In July 2020, Mr. Paschke ended his business relationship with Serrala. Mr. Paschke then began marketing multiple SAP data archiving products, some of which provided functionality similar to Serrala’s software.
Serrala brought suit, claiming that Mr. Paschke failed to maintain the confidentiality of Serrala’s technical information, failed to return a laptop hard drive belonging to Serrala, misappropriated Serrala’s trade secrets, and infringed Serrala’s software copyrights.
Serrala subsequently engaged DisputeSoft to analyze the parties’ source code for literal and nonliteral similarities and investigate Mr. Paschke’s conduct relating to the preservation of the Serrala hard drive.
As software experts for Serrala, DisputeSoft:
- Performed manual tracing and analysis of hundreds of lines of ABAP source code to identify organizational and workflow similarities between the parties’ software products.
- Conducted automated comparisons of the parties’ source code to locate instances of literal similarity.
- Researched competing SAP data archiving products and services to determine the degree to which functional similarities between the parties’ products were readily ascertainable or generally known in the software industry.
- Submitted a forensic declaration describing proper hard drive preservation procedures and comparing them to Mr. Paschke’s conduct.
Serrala and Mr. Paschke entered into a settlement agreement in January 2023.
Learn more about our Source Code Examination and Computer Forensics Services
DisputeSoft provides software source code examination and computer forensics services to law firms engaged in complex software disputes.
Related Experts: Todd Trivett, Nick Ferrara, Josh Siegel, Tom Ashley,Aaron Green
Service Areas: Source code examination, Computer forensics, Trade secret misappropriation, Copyright infringement