Nawaf Hasan was one of the four employees that Gallagher accused Ardonagh’s Bishopsgate of poaching from Gallagher-owned Alesco
A judge has slammed Gallagher’s international commercial director, Vyvienne Wade, for making ”a wholly gratuitous and in context grossly insulting reference” to a broker’s Muslim faith.
The judge was speaking in his verdict statement in the Gallagher v Ardonagh case, in which broker Nawaf Hasan was one of the four employees that Gallagher accused Ardonagh’s Bishopsgate of poaching from Gallagher-owned Alesco.
As reported by Insurance Times, court had heard how international commercial director Vyvienne Wade made a reference to the Qur’an when speaking about Hasan in an email exchange with Matson, writing about “awaiting 72 virgins”.
Gallagher chief executive Simon Matson behaviour and language was also in the spotlight, with the judge finding him to be ”a particularly partisan witness who leapt to positions which were unmeasured and who was quick to anger”.
Gallagher has since said the comments are not a true reflection of the company and there is regret over the incidents.
The judge added that ”It may have been a part of the culture, and he may now regret that he used it, but the inflammatory language used by him at the time of the departures of the departing employees was all part of the exaggerated reaction to what had occurred.
”He even referred at the time to their departure as a ’terrorist attack’.
”He leapt to the conclusion that the departure of a number of employees connoted unlawful conduct, he wanted to go to war with Mr Ross and he wanted to ’crush’ him.”
Earlier sessions heard how Hasan was referred to as a ’complicated fat Arab’ by Matson, to which Gary Lashmar, Gallagher chief operating officer adding ’and a very greedy one’.
Justice Freedman today dismissed nearly all of Gallagher’s claims. The judge held up only one claim of Gallagher and Alesco, meaning Ardonagh faced damages of only £100,000 out of nearly £10m claimed. Gallagher will now have to pay £3.1m towards Ardonagh’s legal costs.