Mutual fund prospectus provider NewRiver is suing Morningstar for using Internet espionage to steal information from its patent-protected system.

The lawsuit, filed Jan. 30 in Massachusetts commonwealth court, alleges that Chicago-based Morningstar Inc. gained unauthorized access to NewRiver's web data warehouse last summer when the two companies were in talks to form a strategic partnership. The partnership did not pan out. NewRiver is seeking damages in excess of $20,000.

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