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Ex-director permanently banned from revealing confidential info

Not allowed to help rivals with the skinny on golfing trolley device

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A businessman has been ordered never to improperly reveal confidential information belonging to a company where he used to be a director.

Former Hedgehog Golf Company director Frank Hauser has been banned by the High Court from revealing information about the company. The High Court said that Hauser had been prepared to disclose information about Hedgehog's golf trolley accessory to a rival firm.

Hauser and former fellow director Denis Lantsbury fell out when Lantsbury won an 'unfair prejudice' petition accusing Hauser of taking actions that were not in the company's interest.

The judge at that trial ordered Hauser to sell his shares to Lantsbury, but when the two could not agree a price Hauser threatened to help a rival firm fight a patent dispute with Hedgehog.

Hauser resigned from his directorship at Hedgehog shortly after telling the court that he would fight "to the nth degree" to protect the company in its patent infringement proceedings with a rival, but that that would change if he was no longer a director.

The permanent injunction has been issued on slightly narrower terms than a temporary order that Lantsbury secured against him last year.

"[Hauser] has in the past shown a 'blatant disregard' for Mr Lantsbury's rights; he has revealed an intention to destroy or damage p[Hedgehog]; he has made a number of threats, including to assist a party with which [Hedgehog] is engaged in litigation," said Mr Justice Newey in the High Court ruling.

"Taking the evidence as a whole, it seems to me that [Hedgehog] is well-justified in its concern that Mr Hauser, if not restrained by injunction, will disclose confidential information without [Hedgehog's] consent," he said.

The injunction prevents Hauser from disclosing information relating to a studded device, resembling a hedgehog, which straps to the wheels of golf trolleys in wet conditions and is designed to make it easier for players to cart their clubs around a golf course.

See the ruling here.

Copyright © 2011, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

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