A Citibank employee in London has lost his case after he accused his employer of unfair dismissal.
Szabolcs Fekete was fired last year for gross misconduct. The case was based on Fekete’s expense claim.
He went to Amsterdam on a business trip in July 2022 and upon his return he submitted an expense claim for food and drink.
Fekete initially said that he ate two sandwiches, two coffees and two pasta dishes during the trip. His manager asked him if he consumed all the food that he claimed for to which he replied in an email:
“I was on the business trip by myself and… I had 2 coffees as they were very small. On that day I skipped breakfast and only had 1 coffee in the morning. For lunch I had 1 sandwich with a drink and 1 coffee in the morning. For lunch I had 1 sandwich with a drink and 1 coffee in the restaurant, and took another coffee back to the office with me and had the second sandwich in the afternoon… which also served as my dinner.”
When the bank queried this, he eventually admitted that his partner shared some of the meals.
He was dismissed for gross misconduct, but took Citibank to court for unfair and wrongful dismissal.
The judge found in favour of the bank saying “this case is not about the sums of money involved. This case is about the filing of the expense claim and the conduct of the claimant thereafter”.
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