IBM Corp has denied claims made by SCO Group Inc that it destroyed evidence relevant to their ongoing breach-of-contract and copyright case, maintaining that SCO has had the evidence in question in its possession since March 2005.
Lindon, Utah-based SCO, which believes IBM breached a contract by contributing Unix code to the Linux operating system, accused IBM of destroying evidence in a July 2006 court filing, claiming that IBM directed ‘dozens’ of its Linux developers within its LTC [Linux Technology Center] and at least 10 of its Linux developers outside… to delete the AIX and/or Dynix source code from their computers.
IBM has hit back, noting that the evidence SCO claimed had been destroyed was simply copies of the AIX and Dynix Unix operating system source code, which it handed over to SCO with its CMVC database in March 2005.
Despite SCO’s dogged efforts, it can identify nothing that has been destroyed. Indeed, the very evidence SCO claims has been ‘lost’ has been in SCO’s possession for over a year and a half, noted IBM in a court filing.
While SCO claimed that dozens of its Linux developers and at least 10 of its Linux developers outside were directed to delete code, IBM maintains that eight developers involved with its Linux on PowerPC project were told to ensure that they no longer had access to AIX source code in their sandbox development environments.
Only four of those developers deleted any files, according to IBM, and they constituted either exact copies of AIX code in the CMVC, a copy to which no changes had been made, or a copy with changes that had been rejected.
At worst… perhaps four developers may have deleted copies of the code presented in identical form in IBM’s CMVC database, which has been in SCO’s possession for over a year and a half, IBM added.
IBM also maintained that SCO did not show that IBM acted in bad faith or that SCO suffered any prejudice, and that SCO agreed in March 2006 that there were no disputes between the two parties over discovery evidence.