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Whistle blowing accountant was unfairly sacked says tribunal


A Reading employment tribunal has ruled that an accountant who blew the whistle on his boss’s expense claims to the firm’s US headquarters was subsequently unfairly sacked.

Netcom Consultants an American communications consultancy employed accountant Antonio Fernandes as the accountant at their British offices. When the UK chief executive’s expense claims and requests for cash advances became excessive and unsupported by receipts Fernandes informed the head office in the US. Very shortly afterwards, Fernandes was sacked for gross misconduct.

The employment tribunal held that Netcom Consultants had used a barrage of trivial charges in attempt to oust Fernandes from his position.

Chief executive of Netcom in the US, Bruce Grant, had been involved in a “clear attempt to intimidate and pressurise Mr Fernandes to resign so that all could be hushed up”, the tribunal said.

The case was the first the first of its kind brought under the Public Interest Disclosure Act of 1998.


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