Ex-McDonald’s boss battles sexual affair allegations

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Reuters

Legend
Steve Easterbrook, pictured with company mascot Ronald McDonald, the month he became Chief McDonald’s in 2015


The former McDonald’s boss is pursuing legal action brought by his ex-employer who claims he lied about sex with staff.

Steve Easterbrook requested the dismissal of the case in a filing in a Delaware court on Friday.

McDonald’s fired Mr. Easterbrook last year after discovering he had a consensual relationship with an employee.

But last week he alleged the UK executive lied to the board about three additional relationships.

The fast food giant is suing to recover its payment, worth $ 40million (£ 35million), arguing it was obtained fraudulently.

McDonald’s prohibits any kind of intimate relationship between employees in a direct or indirect reporting relationship.

‘Naked photos’

According to reports, Mr. Easterbrook’s case alleges the case against him is both “baseless” and “misleading”.

He also accuses McDonald’s of bringing his case in the bad state of America and of making a wrongful breach of contract claim.

McDonald’s said it “stands by its complaint, both the factual claims and the court in which it was filed.”

At the time of Mr Easterbrook’s impeachment in November, McDonald’s said it had only evidence of a non-physical, consensual relationship, consisting of intimate text messages and video calls.

He agreed to terminate Mr Easterbrook’s contract “without cause” fearing a protracted legal battle, according to the firm’s legal record.

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But after receiving a warning from an employee in July, the fast food giant launched a second investigation, which found “compelling evidence” of three more sexual encounters.

He says investigators found nude photographs sent from Mr Easterbrook’s company email account, as well as messages showing he had approved the grant of shares worth several hundred dollars. thousands of dollars to one of the employees “shortly after their first sexual encounter”.

McDonald’s said if he had seen this information, he would not have approved his multi-million dollar payment.

Mr. Easterbrook, who grew up in Watford, UK, ran McDonald’s from March 2015 to November 2019, having previously led its UK operations.

He has been widely recognized for revitalizing the company’s stores and menus.

The BBC has requested a comment from Mr Easterbrook’s lawyer.

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