Saatchi to seek injunction against four

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The Independent Online
Saatchi & Saatchi will attempt to obtain restraining injunctions on Maurice Saatchi, its former chairman and one of the advertising agency's founding fathers, and three other former employees at the High Court in London on Wednesday.

The hearing, which will be in open court, will probably last two days and could well spill over into Friday, a company spokesman said yesterday.

The other three former employees that Saatchi & Saatchi is attempting to stop from starting a competing business with Maurice Saatchi are Jeremy Sinclair, Bill Muirhead and David Kershaw, who resigned on 9 January over the ousting in December of the chairman.

Mr Sinclair was the £350,000-a-year acting chairman for only three weeks and the chief creative director; Mr Muirhead was the head of the North American operations; and Mr Kershaw was in charge of the British business.

Besides the attempt to obtain injunctions, the company is also involved in legal action against the four men on several other fronts.

The company is claiming damages against them for an alleged "conspiracy to injure the business of the group and against Maurice Saatchi for soliciting the other three". In return, Maurice Saatchi has issued a writ against the company for unspecified damages for alleged breach of contract.

The company is also in the throes of taking legal action against Mr Muirhead on the other side of the Atlantic, where it has filed a lawsuit in New York claiming damages of $50m. Mr Muirhead is trying to have the action thrown out of court.

Other matters are also being investigated by the company's solicitors, Macfarlanes.

One main area is a reputed $40m (£25m) settlement that Maurice Saatchi and his brother Charles, who is still honorary president of the company, made as a result of a legal dispute with Adidas, the German sports firm.