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Former Hewlett Packard vice president of imaging and printing services Atul
Malhotra is facing 10 years in prison after pleading guilty Friday to stealing
trade secrets from IBM, according to federal
prosecutors.

According to court records, Malhoutra, 42, worked at IBM
from 1997 to 2006. In March of 2006, while serving as director of sales and
business development in output management services for IBM
Global Services, he requested a copy of IGS’ CC Calibration Metrics, a series
of confidential documents that included products costs, materials and other
competitive information. Court records indicate Malhoutra was warned not to
share the documents, all of which were marked “confidential,” because of their
sensitive nature.

Two months after receiving the documents, however, Malhotra left IBM
for HP, where, according to his plea agreement, he shared the confidential
documents with his new bosses.  Malhotra
sent two e-mails to HP senior vice presidents with the subject, "For Your
Eyes Only," and attached the CC Calibration Metrics. In the e-mails
message, Malhotra said the information would help specific HP sales teams
better understand their IBM’s goals and help
them when pricing competitive deals.

HP fired Malhotra when an internal investigation revealed the transgression, court records show. Both HP and IBM cooperated with federal investigators.

Sentencing is set for Oct. 29. Malhotra faces a maximum of 10 years in
prison, a fine of $250,000 and three years probation.