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Google CEO: NYT Story on Us Is 'Difficult to Read'

Company allegedly paid Andy Rubin $90M despite 'credible' harassment claim
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 26, 2018 6:07 AM CDT
In this Wednesday, May 17, 2017 photo, Google CEO Sundar Pichai delivers the keynote address of the Google I/O conference in Mountain View, Calif.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)
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(Newser) – Google revealed Thursday that it has fired no fewer than 48 employees for sexual harassment over the last two years—and it sent them away without severance packages. Google employees were told about the firings in an email from CEO Sundar Pichai hours after the New York Times reported that the company had protected three senior executives accused of sexual misconduct over the last decade, the AP reports. Sources told the Times that one the execs was Android software creator Andy Rubin, who was accused of coercing an employee into performing oral sex in a hotel room in 2013. The sources said Rubin was handed a $90 million exit package, even though Google concluded the claim was credible and it could have paid him nothing.

Pichai—who called the Times story "difficult to read" and did not dispute the allegations—told employees the company is "dead serious about making sure we provide a safe and inclusive workplace" and has taken an "increasingly hard line on inappropriate conduct" in recent years, CNBC reports. He said 13 of the 48 people fired for misconduct were senior managers or above. In a statement issued after the Times report, Rubin claimed the "false allegations" were part of a "smear campaign" from his ex-wife. (Amit Singhal, another ex-Google exec named in the report, quit his new job at Uber after it emerged that he had failed to tell them about the allegations.)

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