In the midst of a lawsuit filed by Waymo that could seriously hurt Uber’s autonomous driving ambitions, the head of the ride-hailing company’s self-driving division has stepped aside from his position.
Anthony Levandowski, the former Google employee at the center of the lawsuit, recently sent an email to Uber employees saying that he will no longer be involved in any LiDAR-related work or management, Business Insider reports.
In Levandowski’s email, he said “As you know, I currently don’t provide input on detailed LiDAR design choices. But making this organizational change means I will have absolutely no oversight over or input into our LiDAR work. Going forward, please make sure not to include me in meetings or email threads related to LiDAR, or ask me for advice on the topic.”
This decision means the self-driving wiz will no longer act as the head of Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group.
In the lawsuit, Waymo claims that Levandowski downloaded over 14,000 documents about the company’s driverless car program and colluded with Uber to use the technology.
After he left his position as the head of Google’s self-driving car project, he founded autonomous truck start-up Otto and sold it to Uber for $680 million six months later.