They're accused of taking store data.

Smyth Jewelers in Maryland is suing several ex-employees who started their own jewelry retail business.

Smyth accuses some of the former employees of taking confidential data, including customer lists, the Baltimore Sun reports.

Defendants in the lawsuit are former Smyth Chief Operating Officer Mark Motes, former Vice President of Operations John Jackson III and former employees Mason Motes and Brian McCullough.

The former employees started Meritage Fine Jewelers, the Sun reports.

Jackson and Mark Motes are alleged to have taken a variety information, including customer, vendor and employee data.

According to the lawsuit: "The actions of misappropriation of trade secrets were both willful and malicious, done with the intent of using such trade secrets in defendants' competing jewelry business."

A lawyer for Meritage and Jackson declined to comment, according to the Sun. The newspaper was unable to reach the other defendants.

Smyth operates three stores.

Meritage's plans call for opening a store in Lutherville.

Read more at the Baltimore Sun

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