Sacked TXU email row boss defence

A FORMER £98,000-a-year TXU boss who was sacked for sending a derogatory email today denied any knowledge about a company e-mail policy.Bob Clarke, who was based in Ipswich, was sacked from his position as national sales manager after forwarding on a derogatory e-mail on TXU's internal system.

A FORMER £98,000-a-year TXU boss who was sacked for sending a derogatory email will today continue his battle against the firing.

Bob Clarke, who was based in Ipswich, was sacked from his position as national sales manager after forwarding on a derogatory e-mail on TXU's internal system.

As reported in later editions of yesterday's Evening Star Mr Clarke's defence team at the employment tribunal hearing, in Southgate Street, Bury St Edmunds, argued that it was intended as a joke and was not meant to cause offence.

The hearing heard from three of Mr Clarke's colleagues who all said that they had not been given an induction advising them of the company's e-mail policy.


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Representing Mr Clarke, Wayne Beglan said Mr Clarke's dismissal was linked to a personal feud with another member of senior management and the e-mail was used as an excuse for the dismissal. The e-mail was sent on March 8, 2002 but it was 12 days before it was first mentioned as being inappropriate, Mr Beglan claimed, and then he said: "It shows that the company did not take it seriously at first".

The tribunal heard Mr Clarke was summoned to a disciplinary hearing for the offence but was not given any warning but was simply dismissed.

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Mr Beglan said: "The fact that the e-mail was not dealt with quicker shows first of all that there was no serious risk of him re-offending and secondly, that the matter by itself wasn't regarded as that important by human resources."

Mr Beglan argued that the e-mail was sent as a "bit of humour" although he added it was misguided. He said his client was not racist in any way.

A verdict is due to be reached today.

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