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IBM faces lawsuit from partner Devon IT

A Pennsylvania company has sued IBM and four executives, alleging fraud, racketeering and conspiracy over a failed partnership to develop server computers and other products.

Devon IT's lawsuit alleges that IBM officials, including two based at the technology giant's Research Triangle Park campus, misused $12 million that Devon invested in several IBM projects. Devon borrowed that money, defaulted on its loans and has had to lay off 60 employees.

Devon lost its investment in IBM as well as another $20 million on expenses related to the projects. Devon is seeking triple damages, under the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, totaling more than $100 million.

IBM said it will promptly seek to dismiss the claims and "will defend the suit vigorously." In a prepared statement, IBM wrote that Devon's "overheated claims are without merit" and "filled with outright falsehoods, half-truths and exaggeration."

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