Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina and New Jersey State Police Colonel Patrick J. Callahan announced that a Bordentown City man has been charged with stealing proprietary intellectual property while he was employed by a luxury boat manufacturer in Bass River Township.
Cameron O’Connell, 27, of the 100 block of Prince Street, was charged with Computer Crime (Second Degree), and two counts of Unlawful Possession of a Weapon (Second Degree). The weapons charges are unrelated to the computer crime, and were filed after two handguns were found during the execution of a search warrant by New Jersey State Police on September 22 at O’Connell’s residence.
O’Connell, who was taken into custody at that time, was released following an initial appearance in Superior Court in Mounty Holly. The case will now be prepared for presentation to a Burlington County Grand Jury for possible indictment.
“Industrial espionage is a very serious crime; the theft of trade secrets and other proprietary information can be devastating to a company,” Prosecutor Coffina said. “We are committed to protecting Burlington County businesses from the stealing of their property, whether at the sales counter or in the design room.”
The investigation began earlier this month after representatives from Viking Yacht Company in Bass River Township contacted New Jersey State Police and indicated their internal information network had been compromised. The company had determined that proprietary intellectual property had been downloaded onto a USB device via the defendant’s desktop computer after his login information had been utilized to gain access.
“O’Connell stole intellectual property by secretly downloading data from his employer’s internal network using a USB storage device. This type of theft comes with real-life consequences, which can cost companies millions and lead to job loss,” said Colonel Callahan, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. “We will continue to vigorously investigate and pursue those who seek to harm New Jersey businesses and ensure that anyone who attempts to profit from the theft of protected and proprietary information is held accountable.”
O’Connell, who is no longer with the company, will be prosecuted by Assistant Prosecutor Joseph Remy. The investigation was conducted by detectives from the New Jersey State Police’s Tuckerton Station.
All persons are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law