In Multifeeder Technology, Inc. v. British Confectionery Co., No. 09-1090 (D. Minn. Sept. 18, 2012), the court ordered the defendant to pay $600,000 in discovery sanctions under Rule 37 because of the defendant’s destruction of electronic evidence.  Earlier in the case, the plaintiff had successfully moved for the appointment of an independent e-discovery expert to analyze the defendant’s computers.  After the expert was appointed, but before the expert performed the analysis, certain of defendant’s executives erased files from their computers and one executive used “wiping” software to make his files unrecoverable.  The executives claimed they had erased only “personal” or “embarrassing” files unrelated to the litigation.  The court held that it could not “reasonably rely” on that explanation in the “face of ample circumstantial evidence” of spoliation, and ordered that the defendant pay $600,000 as a discovery sanction, of which approximately $490,000 represented the fees of the court-appointed expert and the remainder represented fees and costs of the plaintiff.