UK - Embattled fund manager Merrill Lynch has found itself in court once again - this time over a case of alleged racial discrimination.
An employment tribunal in Croydon, this week began hearing the claims of Adnan Aziz Ahmed, who was dismissed in November 2000 following allegations that he sexually harassed a woman at Merrill Lynch.
An internal inquiry at the firm has already found that the harassment claims made against Ahmed, who joined Merrill Lynch’s private equity division in 1998, were not true.
Ahmed is claiming unfair dismissal and racial discrimination. The tribunal is expected to last until the end of the week.
A Merrill Lynch spokesman said: “Merrill Lynch does not tolerate discriminatory or inappropriate conduct including conduct based on race, colour or gender. Merrill Lynch is committed to providing a respectful work environment.”
Ahmed has also lodged a legal claim for compensation in the High Court for defamation in the wake of his dismissal. This route of action is unlikely to be pursued if he wins the tribunal.
The tribunal is more bad news for Merrill Lynch.
At the end of last year, Merrill Lynch Investment Managers settled with Unilever for a sum believed to be £70m after a protracted court case in which it was accused of negligence.
This month the firm announced that 9000 employees had been made redundant worldwide as part of cost cutting measures which aim to save around £1bn per year.
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