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Iofina, Inc. v. Khalev

United States District Court, W.D. Oklahoma

February 17, 2017

IOFINA, INC., IOFINA RESOURCES, INC. and IOFINA CHEMICAL, INC., Plaintiffs,
v.
IGOR KHALEV, and KIVA HOLDING, INC., Defendants.

          ORDER

          VICKI MILES-LaGRANGE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Before the Court is plaintiffs' Motion for Permanent Injunction, filed December 8, 2016. On December 16, 2016, defendants filed their response, and on December 20, 2016, plaintiffs filed their reply. On December 22, 2016, the Court held a hearing on this matter. Based upon the parties' submissions, as well as the evidence presented at the jury trial of this matter and the arguments made at the December 22, 2016 hearing, the Court makes its determination.

         I. Introduction

         This case was tried to a jury from November 4, 2016 through November 28, 2016. After deliberation, the jury returned a verdict in favor of plaintiffs and against defendant Igor Khalev (“Dr. Khalev”) on plaintiffs' claims for misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of the Non-Disclosure Agreement, unfair competition, and conversion; a verdict in favor of Dr. Khalev and against plaintiffs on plaintiffs' claims for tortious interference with contract and breach of fiduciary duty; a verdict in favor of defendant KIVA Holding, Inc. (“KIVA”) on plaintiffs' claims for misappropriation of trade secrets, unfair competition, conversion, and tortious interference with contract; and a verdict in favor of Dr. Khalev and against plaintiffs on Dr. Khalev's counterclaim for breach of contract.

         Based upon the Non-Disclosure Agreement between plaintiff Iofina Resources, Inc. and Dr. Khalev, the Oklahoma Uniform Trade Secrets Act (“OUTSA”), and the jury verdict in this case, plaintiffs now move this Court to grant a permanent injunction against Dr. Khalev and KIVA. Specifically, plaintiffs request that the Court enjoin Dr. Khalev and KIVA as follows:

a. Khalev and KIVA, and their respective employees, agents, contractors, partners and investors should be enjoined from disclosing any portion of Plaintiffs' trade secret process in any manner, whether in written, audible or visual form. For the sake of clarity, and without limiting the scope of the requested injunction, Khalev should be enjoined from providing any services, consulting or otherwise, in which a part of those services require providing information about extracting iodine from produced water at salt water disposal sites.
b. Khalev and KIVA, and their respective employees, agents, contractors, partners and investors should be enjoined from using any portion of Plaintiffs' trade secret process. For the sake of clarity, and without limiting the scope of the requested injunction, Khalev and KIVA should be enjoined from constructing any iodine extraction plants that extract iodine from produced water at salt water disposal sites using air desorption.
c. Khalev and KIVA, and their respective employees, agents, contractors, partners and investors should be enjoined from producing any iodine at the iodine extraction plant in Leedey, Oklahoma, as its operation is so intertwined with Plaintiffs' trade secret process as to make such operation a misappropriation of the same.
d. Khalev, and his agents or anyone acting in concert with him, should be enjoined from using or disclosing Plaintiffs' Proprietary Information, as that term is defined in the Non-Disclosure Agreement, engaging in any activity prohibited by the Non-Disclosure Agreement, or from otherwise breaching the Non-Disclosure Agreement.

         Plaintiffs' Motion for Permanent Injunction [docket no. 284] at 2-4. Further, in the event that the Court does not grant all the injunctive relief requested in paragraph (c) and the Court allows defendants to operate the plant at Leedey, Oklahoma, plaintiffs request that the Court condition future use of the plant upon the payment of a reasonable royalty.

         II. Discussion

For a party to obtain a permanent injunction, it must prove: (1) actual success on the merits; (2) irreparable harm unless the injunction is issued; (3) the threatened injury outweighs the harm that the injunction may cause the opposing party; and (4) the injunction, if issued, will not adversely affect the public interest.

SW Stainless, LP v. Sappington, 582 F.3d 1176, 1191 (10th Cir. 2009) (internal quotations and citation omitted). Plaintiffs assert that they have proven the four requirements set forth above.

         A. Actual ...


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