Saturday, August 19, 2000

Fired worker awarded $2.7M

The Associated Press

        SAN FRANCISCO — A jury has awarded $2.7 million to a former Oracle employee who was fired because she was pregnant and blew the whistle on co-workers she believed had inappropriately used elements of a competitor's software.

        The Superior Court jury on Wednesday awarded Sandy Baratta about $2 million in canceled stock options, $300,000 in lost wages and $200,000 for emotional distress. The jury did not award punitive damages.

        Oracle argued that Ms. Baratta, 39, was fired because she mistreated her staff.

        “Oracle intends to challenge the verdict ... and believes there is a high likelihood the verdict will not be allowed to stand,” said Jennifer Glass, a spokeswoman for the Redwood City-based software company.

        Ms. Baratta said Oracle suddenly fired her over the telephone on April 30, 1999, just before she boarded a plane.


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