Microsoft wins the first round of action against Google

Microsoft has won the first round in its legal action against Google, with a restraining order that prevents a former Microsoft employee from engaging in competing work at the search company.

The ruling came from King County Superior Court in Seattle on Thursday and represents an initial, if small, win for Microsoft. The software company is suing to prevent Dr Kai-Fu Lee from taking work with Google that would compete with Microsoft's search engine strategy in China.

Lee was formerly a vice president in charge of Microsoft's Beijing research and development centre, and Microsoft claimed in a lawsuit last week that Lee's work with Google would directly compete with his Microsoft role, informs Tech World.

According to PC Pro, the temporary injunction is set to expire on Sept. 6th. The judge has set a hearing for that date to decide on a motion restricting Lee's work at Google until the full case goes to trial. The full hearing is set to take place on January 9th next year.

As is the way with these things, Google has countersued Microsoft claiming restraint of trade and insisting that Dr Lee had not broken his agreement with Microsoft as his speciality is not in search technology. The search engine claims the Microsoft suit is less to do with one employee's contract and more about a wider strategy to counter Google.

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