Uber has fired Anthony Levandowski, the former head of its self-driving car program, over his refusal to cooperate in its legal battle against Waymo.

Uber move, which it made on Friday, was first reported on Tuesday by the New York Times. Business Insider confirmed Levandowski's firing with the company.

Uber had been asking Levandowski to assist with the internal investigation for months, according to a company spokesperson. Levandowski, however, has plead the Fifth Amendment to protect himself against self-incrimination and hired his own criminal attorneys to represent him.

Uber fired Levandowski after he didn't meet the company's deadline for complying with its request, the spokesperson said. Eric Meyhofer, who has been running Uber's Advanced Technologies Group since Levandowski was demoted in April, will continue to oversee Uber's self-driving car development.

Despite not being named in the lawsuit, Levandowski's actions have been the center of a legal battle between Uber and Waymo, the self-driving car operation from Google parent company Alphabet. Waymo has accused Levandowski of downloading 14,000 files before he left Google and then using that information to jump-start Uber's self-driving car program.

Earlier in May, a federal judge formally blocked Levandowski from all Lidar-related work at the company. But as part of the judge's preliminary injunction, Judge William Alsup also issued a May 31 deadline for Uber to return the missing files.

The company also to has to hand over a detailed log of "conferences, meetings, phone calls, one-on-one conversations, texts, emails, letters, memos, and voicemails -- wherein Anthony Levandowski mentioned LiDAR to any officer, director, employee, agent, supplier, or consultant of defendants" by the end of June.

In response to the judge's motion, Uber wrote a letter to Levandowski on May 15, issuing a series of demands and threatening to fire him if he didn't comply. In Levandowski's termination letter, first obtained by the Washington Post, Uber wrote that it "requested your full cooperation" but "as of today, you have not complied with these requirements."

It had also sent an earlier letter of demands in April, which has not been made public. Levandowski did not comply with that request either.

"Your failure impeded Uber's internal investigation and defense of the lawsuit referenced above and constitutes a ground for termination for Cause," Uber's general counsel Salle Yoo wrote in his dismissal.

This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

Published on: May 30, 2017