Ex-Coke Employee Gets 8 Years

Former secretary stole secrets and samples; tried to sell them to Pepsi
By Dustin Lushing,  Newser Staff
Posted May 23, 2007 2:25 PM CDT
'   (KRT Photos)
camera-icon View 3 more images

(Newser) – A former secretary for Coca-Cola was sentenced to eight years in federal prison Wednesday for conspiring to steal trade secrets—documents and samples of unlaunched products—and then sell them to Pepsi. Joya Williams was nabbed after the FBI traced a letter soliciting a kickback from Pepsi, sent by one of her accomplices in May 2006.

A tearful apology—her first admission of guilt—didn't score with the judge, who departed from sentencing guidelines and meted out the harsh punishment. "I can't think of another case in 25 years that there's been so much obstruction of justice," he said. (Read more Coca Cola stories.)