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Irish National facing legal action from Clarke

THE Irish National Stud, already embroiled in a lengthy and expensive legal case involving one of its employees, is now facing the prospect of further action - this time from its former chief executive John Clarke.

John Clarke - Irish National Stud

John Clarke: the Irish National Stud's former CEO intends to take action against the stud

  PICTURE: Mark Cranham 

Extraordinarily, both cases are linked to an affair Clarke is alleged to have had with the stud's nomination manager Julie Lynch, who will appeal against the decision to put her on medical leave in the Irish High Court next week.

Clarke gave notice that he intends to take action against the stud on April 26. It comes at a time when Irish legal sources are estimating that the Lynch case has already cost it upwards of €500,000.

At the centre of Clarke's case is an independent report, commissioned by the Irish National Stud, into allegations made against him by Lynch of bullying in the wake of their affair ending.

The report was compiled by Finbarr Flood, a former managing director of Guinness and chairman of the Labour Court, concluded that Clarke's "bullying treatment humiliated, intimidated and belittled" Lynch.

Having been informed by the stud's directors that he would be the subject of a disciplinary hearing, Clarke left his job in January with a reported €64,775 severance payment. Clarke said he wanted to fulfil an ambition to become a bloodstock consultant and left before any hearing took place.

But subsequent to his departure, the findings of the Flood Report have entered the public domain and it is understood that Clarke's legal action is centred on his wish to refute the allegations against him.

The Irish National Stud indicated to the High Court on May 5 that it will contest any legal action that Clarke pursues, but it is already due to be in court this Tuesday in the latest round of legal action involving Julie Lynch, who has been on enforced medical leave since January,. She is seeking damages from the stud arising from alleged bullying and alleged sexual assault by Clarke.





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