HARRY R. WEBER AP Business Writer
ATLANTA Coca-Cola and Pepsi are usually bitter enemies, but when PepsiCo Inc. got a letter offering to sell Coke trade secrets, it went straight to its corporate rival. Six weeks later, three people were to appear in federal court today to face charges of stealing confidential information, including a sample of a new drink, from The Coca-Cola Co. And trying to sell it to PepsiCo Inc. “Competition can sometimes be fierce, but also must be fair and legal,” Pepsi spokesman Dave DeCecco said. “We’re pleased the authorities and the FBI have identified the people responsible for this.” The suspects arrested Wednesday include a Coke executive’s administrative assistant, Joya Williams, who is accused of rifling through corporate files and stuffing documents and a new Coca-Cola product into a personal bag. Williams, 41, of Norcross, Ga., and 30-year-old Ibrahim Dimson of New York and 43- year-old Edmund Duhaney of Decatur, Ga., were charged with wire fraud and unlawfully stealing and selling Coke trade secrets, federal prosecutors said. Atlanta-based Coke thanked Pepsi for its assistance. Chief executive Neville Isdell said in a memo to employees Wednesday that the company is cooperating with federal authorities.