In what’s shaping up to be a bruising trial, a Dallas County jury began hearing testimony last week in a suit in which a former Baron & Budd lawyer alleges Russell Budd, a founder of the well-known asbestos litigation firm, made negligent and fraudulent misrepresentations to induce him to join the firm in May 2006.

But Baron & Budd, which also is a defendant in the suit, alleges in counterclaims filed in the 68th District Court that plaintiff Gary Cruciani breached a contract with the firm and breached his fiduciary duty when he quit.