Timberwolves staffer arrested for allegedly stealing hard drive with ‘strategic NBA information’

A Timberwolves executive had his hard drive filled with sensitive information stolen and duplicated by an angry subordinate, according to multiple reports. 

Sachin Gupta, the team’s head of its analytics department, had the drive swiped from his office at the Target Center by a team employee and later returned after about 5,700 files, including “strategic NBA information,” were copied, a criminal complaint stated according to The Star Tribune. 

The drive, allegedly stolen by then-staffer Somak Sarkar, also contained employee and player contracts, Gupta’s tax returns and other financial and personal information. 

Somak Sarkar was released from custody on Wednesday. Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office

Sarkar, who was subsequently fired, was arrested on Monday and charged with burglary and felony third-degree burglary, entering without consent with intent to steal/commit felony or gross misdemeanor. 

Sarkar, a coaching analyst with Minnesota, was released on $40,000 bail on Wednesday and is scheduled to appear in court Thursday. 

Sarkar, who previously worked with the Knicks in 2021 as a coordinator of coaching analytics, claimed to police that he had Gupta’s drive to “put some stuff on it” then forgot to give it back, the complaint stated. 

Security footage captured Sarkar going into Gupta’s office on Feb. 3, while Gupta noticed his hard drive was missing on Feb. 5. 

On Feb. 9, Sarkar was fired without an explanation and escorted by security out of the building. 

The former employee allegedly stole files with a trove of information. AP

Shortly after, another Timberwolves employee returned the drive to Gupta. 

Gupta then went to law enforcement on March 4. 

The bad blood between the two allegedly stemmed from Sarkar being reassigned from working in analytics in the summer of 2023 after “butting heads” with his direct superior, along with errors involving computer coding and missed meetings, court documents said. 

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“Gupta is concerned that Sarkar is going to disseminate the proprietary Timberwolves information and his private information,” one of the court documents read. 

Following a search of Sarkar’s apartment, authorities found several hard drives, a computer, three tablets and multiple USB drives, and police indicated that one of the devices had the duplicated information from Gupta’s hard drive.

According to ESPN, the Timberwolves are aware of the situation but do not plan on pressing criminal charges.

Heading into Wednesday’s action, the Timberwolves sit in third in the Western Conference.

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