Lawsuit • May 16, 2023 ∙ 5 min read ∙ View 1

NPI vs. Trulife Distribution Inc: A Case of Alleged Trade Secret Theft and Unfair Competition

Nutritional Products International (NPI), a prominent global marketer of health and wellness brands, has recently filed a lawsuit against Brian Gould and Rodica Lesan Gould, owner of TrueLife Distribution Inc, alleging theft of trade secrets, conspiracy, breach of fiduciary duty, and tortious interference, among other counts.

The lawsuit claims that while employed at NPI, Rodica Lesan Gould systematically stole company files, trade secrets, and prospective clients, diverting business to competing companies.

This article critically examines the case, exploring the allegations and potential implications for the parties involved.

Lawsuit Background

NPI, owned by Mitch Gould, specializes in assisting companies in expanding their product sales throughout the United States.

With its proprietary system, “The Evolution of Distribution,” NPI has facilitated successful product launches and sales through major retailers like Amazon, CVS, Target, Walgreens, and Walmart.

The lawsuit accuses Rodica Lesan Gould of participating in a scheme to mislead foreign brands into believing that Trulife Distribution, a competing company, has the necessary infrastructure and capabilities to distribute their products in the U.S.

NPI Allegations on Rodica Gould

The primary allegations include theft of trade secrets, conspiracy, tortious interference, and breach of fiduciary duty.

NPI’s lawsuit against Rodica Lesan Gould and Brian Gould and Rodica’s parents, Valentina Lesan and Anatolie Lesan, accuses them of various wrongdoings.

NPI claims Rodica systematically stole confidential company files and trade secrets before diverting business to other entities, ultimately competing with NPI.

The lawsuit seeks a temporary injunction and monetary damages to prevent Rodica Lesan Gould from continuing to operate businesses in competition with NPI.

Evaluation of the Lawsuit

The lawsuit raises serious concerns about protecting trade secrets and fair competition. If proven true, the alleged actions of Rodica Lesan Gould would constitute a breach of trust and a violation of the fiduciary duty she owed to NPI as an employee.

Furthermore, diversifying the business to competing entities could be seen as an unfair business practice, potentially causing reputational and financial harm to NPI.

NPI’s claims of theft of trade secrets and conspiracy require careful examination of the evidence and legal arguments. Trade secrets are valuable assets that provide a competitive advantage to businesses.

The burden of proof lies with NPI to demonstrate that Rodica Lesan Gould accessed, misappropriated, and utilized trade secrets belonging to NPI for the benefit of competing entities.

The court will need to assess the evidence presented to determine whether the alleged theft of trade secrets occurred and whether it constitutes a violation of intellectual property rights.

The issue of tortious interference and conspiracy raises questions about the involvement of Brian Gould, Rodica’s husband and a former employee of NPI, as well as Rodica’s parents. NPI alleges that they conspired with Rodica to divert business away from NPI.

The court will need to assess the evidence of collaboration and intentional interference with contractual relationships or prospective economic advantages to determine the validity of these claims.

Nutritional Products International VS TruLife Distribution Inc Case File

Potential Implications

If NPI’s allegations are substantiated, the court may grant a temporary injunction to prevent Rodica Lesan Gould and the other defendants from engaging in activities that directly compete with NPI.

This could restrict their ability to operate businesses that use stolen trade secrets or unfairly exploit NPI’s client base.

Furthermore, NPI seeks monetary damages to compensate for the harm caused by the alleged theft and unfair competition.

The outcome of this lawsuit will have significant implications for the parties involved. If NPI is successful, it may set a precedent for protecting trade secrets and deterring unfair competition. On the other hand, if the allegations are not proven, it

could raise questions about the validity of NPI’s claims and potentially damage its reputation in the industry.

It is essential to consider the potential defenses that Rodica Lesan Gould and the other defendants may present.

They may argue that the information allegedly stolen does not qualify as trade secrets or that they did not engage in unlawful activities.

They might claim that similarities between their businesses and NPI’s operations are coincidental or based on industry standards rather than deliberate attempts to mislead clients.

The court will carefully examine the evidence presented by both parties, considering factors such as the nature of the information allegedly stolen, any agreements or confidentiality obligations signed by Rodica Lesan Gould during her employment, and the extent to which the competing entities used the alleged trade secrets to their advantage.

Apart from the legal aspects of the case, the lawsuit raises questions about trust, loyalty, and ethical behavior in the business world.

The allegations suggest a breach of trust by an employee who took advantage of her position and knowledge gained at NPI to benefit her ventures.

Such actions undermine the principles of fair competition and can damage the relationships between businesses, clients, and the industry.

Regardless of the lawsuit’s outcome, this case serves as a reminder of the importance of robust confidentiality measures and the need for employers to establish clear policies regarding protecting trade secrets and proprietary information.

Employers should regularly educate employees on their obligations and implement safeguards to prevent unauthorized access and misuse of sensitive data.


The lawsuit filed by Nutritional Products International against Rodica Lesan Gould and other defendants highlights the allegations of theft of trade secrets, conspiracy, and unfair competition.

The case raises significant legal and ethical questions regarding protecting intellectual property and the boundaries of fair business practices.

As the lawsuit progresses, the court will carefully examine the evidence presented by both parties to determine the validity of the claims and the potential consequences for the parties involved.

The outcome of this case will have broader implications for trade secret protection and the importance of maintaining trust and integrity in the business world.

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