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Tall Oak Midstream executives sued by former employer

Former employer claims in lawsuit that executives copied confidential files before leaving the firm to form their own company.
by Adam Wilmoth Modified: March 13, 2014 at 6:00 pm •  Published: March 12, 2014

Denver-based DCP Midstream this week sued one of Oklahoma’s newest energy companies on claims of improperly using confidential information.

The suit against Edmond-based Tall Oak Midstream LLC CEO Ryan Lewellyn and commercial gas supply employee Blake Burger claims that the two former DCP employees copied confidential files before leaving the Denver company and used that information to build their new firm.

Tall Oak spokeswoman Casey Nikoloric said the company had just received the court documents.

“We haven’t had an opportunity to review it in detail with counsel,” she said. “We’re not in a position to comment now.”

About the lawsuit

In the lawsuit filed Monday in Tulsa District Court, DCP Midstream claimed Lewellyn copied files containing the Denver company’s “confidential and proprietary information and trade secrets,” including information on the company’s contracts with clients and information about DCP Midstream’s pipelines.

DCP Midstream’s claims include breach of contract, interference with business relations and misappropriation of trade secrets.

In addition to financial compensation, DCP Midstream asked for injunctions to keep Lewellyn, Burger and Tall Oak from using or disclosing its confidential information and for the return of its documents.

Tall Oak formed last month with a $100 million investment from San Antonio, Texas-based EnCap Flatrock Midstream.

Lewellyn formerly was DCP Midstream’s managing director.

Lewellyn told The Oklahoman last month that he and Chief Commercial Officer Carlos P. Evans developed the idea of Tall Oak during an Oklahoma City Thunder game about a year ago.

by Adam Wilmoth
Energy Editor
Adam Wilmoth returned to The Oklahoman as energy editor in 2012 after working for four years in public relations. He previously spent seven years as a business reporter at The Oklahoman, including five years covering the state's energy sector....
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