Ex-Microsoftie a Million-Dollar Man

Kai-Fu Lee, Google's newly hired executive at the heart of a dispute with Microsoft, made more than $1 million last year at the Redmond, Wash., software giant, according to a court filing.

The filing by Microsoft was in preparation for a hearing today in Washington state court in which Microsoft is asking for a temporary restraining order to prevent Lee from working at Google. Microsoft claims Lee's defection to Google breaks noncompetition promises he made in a contract signed in 2000. "Dr. Lee was well paid in exchange for these promises," Microsoft wrote in the filing. "He has received...well over $3 Million since he returned to Microsoft in August of 2000, including more than $1 Million in 2004 alone."

Google did not immediately return a request for comment. The case appears to be another episode of employee poaching in the tech world and marks the latest clash in the feud between Microsoft and Google, which compete in a variety of areas including desktop search. Lee joined Microsoft in Asia back in 1998, and founded the software giant's China research lab under Rick Rashid, who heads the company's research division. In 2000, he was rehired by Microsoft at its Redmond campus and promoted to vice president, according to the filing.

News source: C|Net News.com

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