Fired Ford Engineer Under FBI Spotlight On Espionage Claims

Cameron Aubernon
by Cameron Aubernon

A former Ford engineer is currently under the gun amid espionage claims levied by the automaker with the help of the FBI.

Autoblog reports the Blue Oval called upon the agency in the former’s investigation of Sharon Leach after security found and seized eight recording devices used in her meetings with her now-former colleagues. In turn, FBI agents arrived at Leach’s home with warrants to seize more such devices — along with computers, jump drives and financial records — fearing whatever may be on them would be destroyed if the agency issued the former engineer a subpoena.

Though Leach has yet to state anything publicly, her attorney, Marshall Tauber, says she used the devices in note-taking:

I think you’re dealing with a person who was seeing how sharp the new kids are and maybe feeling a need to keep up with them. And maybe she realized that she’s not as attentive as she once was and needs a little assistance. Maybe her memory was failing her on the technology end but she didn’t want to admit it.

The case is now in the purview of the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Cameron Aubernon
Cameron Aubernon

Seattle-based writer, blogger, and photographer for many a publication. Born in Louisville. Raised in Kansas. Where I lay my head is home.

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5 of 19 comments
  • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Jul 28, 2014

    Recording a meeting that one is attending is no big deal as long as everyone knows it is happening. The point is - everyone legally has to know. One can say "sorry didn't know" if you were recording just for post meeting note taking BUT it is a blatant invasion of privacy when recording meetings that you were not personally attending. Whether or not a car company has proprietary patented technology worth stealing is irrelevant. It is intellectual property of the company. The most damaging information to steal and probably worth more money is future development plans for products and emerging markets.

  • Zip89123 Zip89123 on Jul 28, 2014

    The FBI came to get back their listening devices now that Government Motors has all the information it needs.

  • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Jul 28, 2014

    Z71_Silvia is slipping. A Ford thread without his usual spam.

    • El scotto El scotto on Jul 28, 2014

      I'm debating whether I should encourage him to cut and paste "dastardly villains" to save time and what little thought he uses.

  • El scotto El scotto on Jul 28, 2014

    No, the points here are not to debate MS. Leach's intellectual capacity or if some part of Ford's managerial hierarchy is filled with dastardly villains. She probably signed some kind of Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) when she went to work for Ford. Words spoken at a company meeting, on company time? Included in her NDA. Discussions of the great sandwiches ordered for the meeting? Ford property too and covered under an NDA. Did she take tapes of Ford meetings home? ( I can't wait for those to hit you tube-sarcasm.) That should be a clear violation of her NDA. I'm sure I'm not the only one here who's signed an NDA. I'm just glad I'm not the person who let her get out of the glass house with her personal recordings/recoding devices.