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SCO is facing legal action from three former senior executives of its parent company who want $100m in damages and their old jobs back.

The three men are former employees of Canopy, SCO's holding company. They claim they were unfairly removed in December last year after a boardroom coup led by Val Noorda Kreidel - daughter of SCO founder Ray Noorda.

The three include Ralph Yarro, former chairman, president and chief exec of Canopy, the firm's former financial director Darcy Mott and former chief counsel Brett Christensen. Yarro had worked with Noorda since 1995 at Canopy and Noorda made it clear he did not want his children involved in the venture capital firm, according to the Salt Lake Tribune. Noorda also founded Novell and is described as the "father of network computing". Noorda is 81 and both sides are accused of exploiting his failing health and memory.

Yarro alleges that, as Noorda's health and mental sharpness declined, his daughter Val moved to "disparage" the three senior executives. She was helped by Terry Petersen, an adviser to Canopy, and William Mustard - who was eventually appointed CEO in Yarro's place.

A Canopy board meeting on 17 December voted to sack the three men. Yarro told the Tribune that: "based on our long and close association, as well as the long-standing mutual trust and respect between us and Mr. Noorda over many years, we do not believe that the actions taken on Dec. 17 reflect the mind and will of Ray Noorda."

But the Utah-based firm is counter-suing the three, accusing them of receiving $20m from the firm by "a series of self-dealing and wasteful transactions". No date has yet been set for hearings.

SCO is best known now for its ongoing court action against IBM and Novell over ownership of Unix.

For more details have a look at the Salt Lake Tribune here. ®

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