Charges: Timberwolves employee stole EVP’s hard drive containing contracts, strategies

A Minneapolis man is accused of stealing and downloading sensitive information from a Minnesota Timberwolves executive’s hard drive while he worked for the team.

Prosecutors charged 23-year-old Somak Sarkar with third-degree burglary in connection to the incident, which allegedly happened last month.

Court documents state that Sarkar worked as an analyst for the team until he was moved to a coaching group last summer because he was “butting heads” with his boss, failing to attend meetings and submitting code incorrectly.

At that point, Timberwolves Executive Vice President Sachin Gupta, who served as the head of basketball operations before Tim Connelly was hired, told Sarkar he was being moved to a different role. Gupta told authorities he thought Sarkar took the news well, although Sarkar became “standoffish” after their talk.

Then, on Feb. 3, Sarkar allegedly went into Gupta’s office when nobody else was around and took a hard drive connected to Gupta’s laptop. That drive contained employee and player contracts, strategic information, sensitive personal data like tax returns, bank statements and investment details, as well as usernames and passwords, Gupta told police.

Charging documents state that Gupta saw the hard drive was missing when he came to work two days later and had security review surveillance video, which caught Sarkar entering Gupta’s office.

Forensic analysis later showed that Sarkar’s laptop was used to open some of the files on the hard drive, and more than 5,000 files in total had been accessed and downloaded elsewhere, the court documents add.

Sarkar was fired later that week and a friend was able to get the hard drive back. Sarkar was arrested earlier this week after police found several hard drives, tablets and a computer in his home, one of which had all the information from Gupta’s hard drive, the complaint states.

He claimed he had the hard drive to “put some stuff on it” and forgot to return it.

His first court appearance is scheduled for Thursday afternoon.