Motorola, Liska continue battle over documents

Motorola and its former CFO, Paul Liska, continued their court battle over documents both sides say are needed for Liska's retaliatory-discharge lawsuit against the handset maker.

Cook County Judge Allen Goldberg granted Liska's motion to force Motorola to produce documents relating to its communications with credit ratings agencies and investment bankers. The judge ruled the company must also hand over documents relating to Liska's interaction with Motorola's board after Jan. 29.

However, the judge also granted Motorola's motion to compel Liska to turn over the contents of his personal Hotmail and Yahoo email accounts. The judge did not order Motorola's board members to turn over the contents of their personal email accounts, something Liska's attorneys had sought. More hearings on the case are scheduled for later this month and in September.

Liska said he was fired after a board meeting Jan. 29. When Motorola reported its fourth quarter earnings Feb. 3, it announced his dismissal. Motorola said in a proxy statement Feb. 19 that Liska was fired "for cause." One day later, Liska filed suit, claiming he had been fired as a retaliatory measure.

According to Liska's lawsuit, the circumstances of Liska's firing center on a presentation he said gave to the company's board about Motorola's mobile devices unit. In it, he said 2009 projections were based on overly optimistic assumptions. He also attacked the unit for not having a forecast for 2010. Motorola has called this a "contrived presentation." Motorola has also said in court filings that Liska had a vendetta against Motorola co-CEO Sanjay Jha, who was hired to turn around the company's handset division.   

For more:
- see this Chicago Tribune article

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