On Monday, former Atmel Corp. general counsel Mike Ross claimed that Atmel Corp.’s $9.65 million backdating settlement is tainted by a conflict of interest at the company’s law firm, Morrison & Foerster.
According to The Recorder, the options backdating derivative suit was filed against 25 Atmel executives, including Ross, on behalf of the company. Morrison & Foerster reportedly represents 21 of the defendants, as well as the company. Ross claims that this presents a conflict because while the company has an interest in maximizing the recovery, the individual defendants wish to minimize what each is required to pay. Morrison & Foerster claims that joint representation is proper in this case. The Recorder reports that the settlement is up for final approval before the federal district court in San Jose, CA.
Ross was reportedly fired from Atmel due to a “travel funds scandal,” and he now has a defamation suit pending against Atmel.