Gerald and CEO Dean sued by former employee over DRC cobalt activities

A former employee is suing Gerald Metals, Gerald Holdings and the chief executive officer of both units for alleged fraud, negligent supervision and infliction of emotional distress related to their cobalt activities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), according to court documents filed in the United States.

Plaintiff Alain Vignon, who was employed at Gerald from April 2011 until June 2016 and reported directly to CEO Craig Dean, led the drive to build the group’s operations in the DRC. In the suit, filed in the Judicial District of Stamford, Connecticut, Vignon alleges that, after Gerald was accused of illegally exporting cobalt materials in the DRC, he was falsely accused by Dean of engaging in criminal activity and was threatened with being fired unless he resolved the situation. The events that unfolded allegedly led to the infliction of emotional distress for Vignon, in addition to defamation of character and wrongful discharge as well as negligent supervision and fraudulent statements by the defendants, the lawsuit states. Dean, in turn, accuses Vignon of organizing and profiting from an alleged fraudulent scheme, pocketing millions of dollars intended to be paid to a joint-venture partner and forging documents to secure internal approvals. Vignon has...


Andrea Hotter

July 26, 2019

17:59 GMT

New York