One of Baker McKenzie’s most senior partners sexually assaulted one of his female associates. Bakers’ management paid her a substantial sum to hush her up, swept the matter under the carpet and denied that it had happened.
RollOnFriday is holding back a number of details – including the name of the perpetrator – so as not to risk identifying the victim. But after an event the partner invited several associates including the victim back to his hotel for drinks, following which he assaulted her. Insiders say that the assault was relatively minor. But it was sufficiently serious to the firm for management to agree that the associate would be paid a significant sum of money, would enter into a confidentiality agreement and would not return to work.
|How it might have looked|
The partner apparently offered to make a large donation to charity by way of atonement. It is not known whether this was accepted. But he remained at the firm and shortly afterwards was promoted.
This should have blown up over a year ago: RollOnFriday contacted Bakers to say that it had been told that a line in the firm’s accounts was a pay off to an associate after a senior partner sexually assaulted her. The firm maintained that it was down to restructuring costs in various departments. The lying liars.
A spokesman said, "We take any allegations of inappropriate behaviour or misconduct extremely seriously. This incident occurred several years ago and was reported by our HR team at the time. We treated the allegation very seriously and immediately carried out a thorough investigation, including obtaining both external and internal advice. On completion of the investigation, the Firm imposed sanctions on the partner concerned*. A confidential settlement was then reached with the employee, which we are not in a position to discuss to protect the interests of the employee. Our Code of Business Conduct reflects the values of our organisation, and we expect all of our people, whether partners or employees, to abide by the principles and standards of behaviour set out in that Code."
He said, "We are looking into all aspects of the 2016 enquiry from Roll On Friday to see if there are lessons that can be learned. Any suggestion however, that the Firm lied is inaccurate and something we refute."
*like promoting him.