April 25 (Bloomberg) — Apple Inc., Google Inc., Intel Corp., and Adobe Systems Inc. agreed to pay $324 million to settle an employee lawsuit over claims they conspired to suppress salaries by not recruiting one another's workers, a person familiar with the matter said.

The settlement covering more than 64,000 technical employees caps a case that had become an embarrassment for some of Silicon Valley's biggest companies by revealing behind-the- scenes wheeling and dealing among top executives at the expense of their workers. Tech luminaries including Apple co-founder Steve Jobs and Google Chairman Eric Schmidt were among those shown in an unflattering light in e-mails and court documents.

Jobs told Google co-founder Sergey Brin, 'If you hire a single one of these people that means war,'' according to Brin's description of a conversation cited in a court ruling.

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