Deutsche Bank AG’s legal team is now facing friendly fire after being targeted in a lawsuit from its former co-head of Asia corporate finance, Douglas Morton, who has filed a wrongful dismissal claim to the order of $17 million (HK$135.3 million) with the Hong Kong’s Labor tribunal, according to a recent Bloomberg report.
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The lawsuit represents Deutsche Bank’s first major hurdle out of its Asian operations in H2 2016, which to date has been the subject of personnel and profitability woes throughout its global business. The claim lobbied by Morton includes both the loss of future income as well as incentive compensation, damages, and legal costs, following an April 22 court filing.
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The Morton-Deutsche Bank divorce was swift and messy, after evidence surfaced that indicated that Morton had allocated company revenue to Zhong De Securities Co. during a deal that the Chinese firm hadn’t worked on. The action resulted in him being put on administrative leave back in May 2015, before ultimately parting ways with the group.
Morton is also seeking a declaration from Deutsche Bank that he was free of any misconduct charges, after a recent High Court filing back in May 2016. His quest to clear his name represents the latest twist in an ongoing investigation and probe by the lender that ultimately paved the way for his dismissal.
As such, Morton’s lawsuit is attempting to elicit a declaration from Deutsche Bank that he was neither reckless or negligent, or purposeful in finalizing a list of deals for revenue sharing with Zhong De Securities in 2012 and 2014. For its part, Deutsche Bank has refused to budge, promising to defend the case and reject Morton’s claims.