A female company director who was pestered by her boss to take part in Kabbalah sessions has been awarded more than £64,000 compensation.
Nadine Nassar, 36, was bombarded with suggestive late-night text messages and phone calls by Kabbalah devotee Guy Oppenheim, 55, chief executive of Notz Stucki, one of Europe’s largest asset management firms.
London Central Employment Tribunal heard how the married Mr Oppenheim encouraged her to take part in the classes. She was sacked in April 2008 after dropping out of the sessions and making a formal complaint about his behaviour.
Mr Oppenheim and the company denied discrimination, sexual harassment, unfair dismissal and victimisation.
The tribunal dismissed Ms Nassar’s claims of sex discrimination due to the length of time in making the complaint.
But last Friday she was awarded £64,320 for unfair dismissal.
The texts were sent late at night and included terms such as “I miss you”. Mr Oppenheim claimed he had been seeking only friendship with Ms Nassar.
But the panel’s judgment said it did not accept the texts had been “purely for business purposes” and that it was clear their content, including a reference which compared Ms Nassar to actress Kate Winslet, “went beyond mere expressions of friendship”.