Los Angeles Superior Judge Joseph Kalin ordered PMC Inc. to pay more than $6.3 million for defendant legal costs and fees in the Paul Winkler case.
The defendants had asked for more than $6.8 million to cover filing fees, deposition costs and related expenses relating to two trials and litigation extending back to 1998. The judge denied some of the claims.
In February, Kalin concluded that PMC acted in bad faith in filing its trade-secret-misappropriation cause of action, and he said that Winkler interests could file for recovery of their costs.
In an Aug. 7 order, Kalin directed PMC to reimburse almost $6 million to Paul Winkler Plastics Corp. and its defendant employees, and about $378,000 to the company's investor-directors.
``We are pleased with court's award,'' Jeffrey Kramer, a Los Angeles lawyer for the defendants, said by telephone. ``We think it sends a strong message to the plaintiffs that the lawsuit was brought in bad faith.''
The judge's findings ``will be all thrown out and reversed on appeal,'' said Louis R. Miller, a Los Angeles lawyer for PMC. ``He is just wrong.''
In mid-1998, Paul Winkler left his position as president of PMC's Winkler Forming Inc. unit in Santa Fe Springs, Calif. He established Paul Winkler Plastics in Buena Park, Calif., with several former Winkler Forming employees.
Both businesses extrude and thermoform amorphous PET sheet.
Trials began June 26 and Nov. 1. The second jury returned its verdict Dec. 27. No damages were awarded to PMC. Lawyers for PMC have filed a notice of appeal on the final judgment and intend to appeal the legal-fee award.