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Kevin Dillon vs JP Morgan: David vs Goliath

Posted by Larry Doyle on August 25, 2010 1:54 PM |

If image is everything, then how is it that perhaps the most revered global banking institution in the world today allows itself to get enmeshed in an ugly legal complaint with a junior level professional.

I am referring to a complaint brought by Kevin Dillon against JP Morgan. I first addressed this situation on July 8th when I encouraged Mr. Dillon to meet Peter Sivere, a former JP Morgan employee who was unceremoniously, and in my opinion undeservedly, relieved of his responsibilities. I wrote Kevin Dillon Meet Peter Sivere,

A recent headline in my local newspaper highlights a whistleblower case involving JP Morgan and an employee named Kevin Dillon. The article, JP Morgan Employee Files Whistle-Blower Lawsuit, details how Dillon was rebuffed while he attempted to report alleged accounting improprieties by a Texas based hedge fund, Highland Capital Management. This fund has a prime brokerage relationship with JP Morgan.

Dillon has brought suit against JP Morgan for alleged mistreatment as a result of his blowing the whistle.

Let’s check back and see how this case brought by “David” Dillon vs “Goliath” Morgan is playing out. In reading a recent update in my local newspaper, I continue to be AGHAST at the manner in which JP Morgan and its legal representatives are handling this complaint. Let’s navigate JP Morgan Asks Judge to Nix Whistleblower Lawsuit,

Lawyers representing financial giant JPMorgan Chase & Co., are firing back at a Greenwich employee who claims the company retaliated against him for blowing the whistle on alleged deceptive investment and management tactics.

The bank wants a judge to strike a complaint filed by Greenwich resident Kevin Dillon, arguing that his case is “legally insufficient” because he was never fired or suspended, according to a motion filed in state Superior Court in Stamford last week.

“While JP Morgan sharply disputes Dillon’s allegations, it is apparent that Dillon’s claims must be dismissed because Dillon has not even arguably set forth a viable cause of action against JP Morgan,” states the motion.

Are you kidding me, JP Morgan? Is this how our system of justice now works? An employee who believes he has been mistreated actually needs to be fired or suspended before being able to file a complaint? When did that rule go into effect?

“Dillon remains employed with JP Morgan, the raise he received in late 2008 remains in effect, and he has not been demoted, suspended or reprimanded in the time period relevant to this complaint.”

Do these facts mean the customer’s practices alleged by Dillon never took place? Do these facts also mean that Dillon’s superiors did not engage in the behaviors he highlights? “Goliath” is not helping its own case nor providing any insights into what really transpired. Let’s continue.

Lawyers for JP Morgan said despite the allegations, Dillon provided no basis for his belief that these practices were “questionable” and failed to point to any regulation or statute that was violated, according to the motion.

When is it the responsibility of a complainant to point out the actual regulation and statutes violated? Anybody in the industry knows that the accounting improprieties alleged by “David” , er Dillon, are violations. Are these “Goliath” lawyers for real?

In the initial complaint, Dillon said that his supervisor attempted to force him out by promoting less qualified employees over him, leaving him out of meetings and intimidating him by discussing the wide array of guns he owned. However, JP Morgan lawyers said while Dillon claims his boss attempted to push him out of the company, the supervisor’s behavior merely consisted of “petty slights or minor annoyances that cannot support a retaliation claim,” according to the motion.

If in fact the supervisor’s behaviors merely consisted of petty slights or minor annoyances, then how have the JP Morgan lawyers allowed this situation to get this far? Why wasn’t this case settled? Was a settlement offerred?

“This is exactly what we expected,” said Sherman. “Instead of appreciating Kevin for stepping forward and raising his concerns, Chase continues to aggressively litigate against him.

Isn’t this the major point in this entire scenario?

We are therefore hopeful that the court allows this lawsuit to move forward so that depositions can get started.”

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