A bill cosponsored by both of Iowa’s U.S. senators that’s designed to shield American innovators from intellectual property theft passed the Senate last night.
Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says he was very pleased to see the Defend Trade Secrets Act be approved by the chamber on a unanimous vote of 87-to-0.
Grassley says, “That will provide new tools for businesses to fight back against bad actors and prevent thieves from disseminating valuable trade secrets.” Grassley is chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee which convened a hearing on trade secret theft last December and he steered the bill to committee passage earlier this year.
The measure would be a boon to many U.S. companies, Grassley says, including Iowa-based DuPont Pioneer. “The company was victim in a high profile 2013 trade secrets case in which six foreign nationals conspired to steal engineered corn seeds in order to benefit a foreign company,” Grassley said. Those seeds were said to be the product of $30 to $40 million in research.
Grassley says the Defend Trade Secrets Act would create a new avenue for companies like DuPont Pioneer to pursue civil claims against trade secret thieves in federal court.