UBS Closes London Harassment Case – finews.asia



UBS settled a discrimination and harassment lawsuit with a former graduate of the Swiss firm’s investment banking unit in London.

A woman who accused the Zurich-based bank of fomenting a culture of harassment and intimidation has settled with UBS, her lawyer told finews.asia on Monday. «We are able to confirm that a settlement was reached with UBS,» Suzanne McKie of Farore Law said, adding that financial details are sealed.

The settlement brings to a close a more than two-year saga involving a former graduate that roiled both UBS and the wider investment banking industry. The graduate alleged that she had been raped by her superior, and separately that she had been groped by a managing director at an event hosted by UBS. The Swiss bank’s handling via an outside probe by a major London law firm was slammed, and the case is being investigated by the U.K. regulator.

Investigator Ascends

The graduate alleged that she had been transferred repeatedly against her wish during the investigation by the bank. She also says to have been threatened with dismissal should she discuss her ordeal outside the bank.

The settlement means the former graduate will withdraw her claim against UBS. The agreement with UBS includes a five-figure donation to British-based whistleblowing charity Protect, according to «Reuters,» which first reported the settlement.

The episode sparked several changes at UBS, including moving top investment banker Emma Molvidson into an investigative role and beefing up human resources with a J.P. Morgan top executive. Separately, Molvidson, part of an elite cadre of UBS «uber» managing directors, added the additional role of employee conduct risk to her remit in April.

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