A salacious letter alleging questionable and deceptive business practices by Uber Technologies Inc. was released to the public Friday as part of Alphabet Inc.’s lawsuit over trade-secret theft. The letter, written by an attorney representing former Uber security employee Richard Jacobs, said the ride-hailing company spied on rivals, bribed officials and used encrypted messaging software to hide its tracks.
Jacobs has since retreated on some claims in the letter. He said in court last month that his lawyer drafted the document and that he couldn’t stand by certain allegations, including ones pertaining to the theft of Alphabet’s self-driving car information at Waymo, which are at the center of the case. Uber paid Jacobs $4.5 million to work as a consultant following the company’s receipt of the letter and gave his lawyer $3 million. The company later derided Jacobs as an “extortionist” who made “fantastical” claims for money.