FAIRFIELD, Calif. (CN) - A pasteurization company harassed and threatened one of its mechanics with deportation to enforce an illegal noncompete contract, the former employee claims in Solano County Superior Court.
Nagarajan Lakshmanan says the noncompete clause of his employment contract is invalid.
"When plaintiff was hired, he was forced to sign an employment agreement ("Agreement") that prohibited him from working for a competitor once he left RF Biocidics," the complaint states.
"RF Biocidics intends to try to enforce the agreement and prevent him from working for a competitor, which is unlawful under California Business and Professions Code," Lakshmanan added.
RF Biocidics uses radio frequency technology developed at the University of California, Davis, to provide an environmentally friendly alternative for pasteurization and control of biological infestations in food and other products, according to the company's website.
Allied Minds, of which RF Biocidics is a subsidiary, describes itself as a capital investment firm that "creates startup businesses based on early-stage technology developed at renowned U.S. Universities."
RF allegedly targeted Lakshmanan after he left the company.
"Since plaintiff has left RF Biocidics he has been threatened by RF Biocidics with deportation (although he is a U.S. citizen)," according to the complaint (parentheses in original). "He was also recently told, before he left on a trip to India, that he should not come back from India and that the location of his family members in India was well known."
Lakshmanan seeks punitive damages against RF Biocidics and Fortunato Villamagna, the company's newly appointed vice president and general manager. He is represented by Jordan Peters in Sacramento.