A judge issued a temporary restraining order Wednesday barring James B. Cowperthwait and 21 other former employees of U.S. Trust from accepting business with the bank's clients.

After Mr. Cowperthwait resigned Friday to start his own firm, the bank sued, alleging misappropriation of confidential client data and charging that the defendants have falsely claimed the bank is no longer offering certain growth investments, a bank spokeswoman said.

The State Supreme Court order is pending a hearing next Tuesday.

Mr. Cowperthwait was president of Campbell, Cowperthwait, a division of U.S. Trust that specializes in large-cap growth stock management.

The division, now headed by Michael K. Schields, managed $5.5 billion of assets at yearend. U.S. Trust manages more than $75 billion. - Katharine Fraser

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