Montreal - Canadian aircraft manufacturer Bombardier has filed a lawsuit against Mitsubishi Aircraft, accusing former employees of providing its Japanese competitor the industrial secrets to help develop the MRJ regional jet.

Engaged on October 19, in a federal court in Seattle, the lawsuit also targets AeroTEC (Aerospace Testing Engineering & Certification), with whom Mitsubishi Aircraft has recruited no less than 92 of its former employees in Quebec and the United States, including two leaders of the CSeries flight test program.

Bombardier claims that the latter have leaked, notably by email, documents considered as trade secrets by Bombardier, particularly concerning the certification process in Canada (by Transport Canada) and in the United States (by the FAA).

In the lawsuit, Canadian aircraft manufacturer blames Mitsubishi Aircraft of violating the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 by using the company's confidential data and documents leaked by former employees to expedite the extraordinarily complex and costly certification of airworthiness process for their MRJ regional jet.

According to Bombardier, its former employees took part in the development process of manufacturers CSeries jets before joining Mitsubishi Aircraft.

Before their separation, the employees supposedly sent confidential documents and data related to CSeries program via their personal e-mail accounts.

This year in July, The CSeries jets were rebranded by Airbus as the A220 after the European aircraft manufacturer acquired the majority stake of the program.

The first modern commercial plane of Japan whose finish date has been postponed five times faces the risk of being delayed again because of the legal claims from an international competitor.