According to court documents, judge Victor A Bolden has ordered Oliver Luck to hand over the passcode to the iPhone that was issued to him by Alpha/XFL during his time as the league’s Commissioner. Luck has until noon on Christmas Eve to comply.
The judge also ordered Vince McMahon‘s defense team to assign a designated technology professional to access the data from the phone, and preserve it, until the discovery hearing on January 12th, 2021.
That designated professional was ordered not to share the data with anyone, including McMahon or his lawyers, until the judge rules whether the passcode was needed by law in the state of Connecticut.
There had been some confusion about what Luck had previously done with information on the phone while he still had it in his possession. He said that in a normal occurrence, he had deleted emails that he had determined were spam. While also admitting to deleting text messages.
Luck was given the letter informing him of his termination on April 9th, 2020. But did not return the phone until May 6th, and continued to use the device.
McMahon’s attorneys were worried about evidence spoliation, which is defined as the “intentional, reckless, or negligent withholding, hiding, altering, fabricating, or destroying of evidence relevant to a legal proceeding”.
It was also brought to the court’s attention that over time, digital devices could be set to delete information whether on the device itself, or on the cloud, and judge Bolden ordered both sides to come up with a stipulation that the spoliation would not occur, but the sides could not agree on terms.
Luck has given the phone and the passcode to his team, who have gathered the data from the phone, but in fairness, both sides are entitled to their own investigation.
The discovery hearing on January 12th will determine if McMahon and Alpha even have the right to obtain the passcode, as the statute on the matter does have the wording that include “former” employers.
During this time Luck also filed for a prejudgment remedy in the case. This assesses whether McMahon has the money, or the means to get it should Luck win the case by assigning property and other things up to the amount sough-after.
In this case, that would be $23.8 million.
This is standard procedure and is not a payment, or a finding of fault by the court. The parties still have to prove their case, as this only applies is the plaintiff has proven probable cause to bring suit.
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