MPT asks for R$30 million conviction against Pedro Guimarães for sexual harassment

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The Public Ministry of Labor (MPT) presented, this Thursday (29), a lawsuit against the former president of Caixa Econômica Federal Pedro Guimarães for sexual and moral harassment.

The MPT asks that Guimarães be sentenced to pay R$ 30.5 million as compensation for collective moral damages because of accusations of sexual and moral harassment while he presided over Caixa.

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In addition to Guimarães, seven members of the state-owned company’s Board of Directors are also targets of the action. In their case, the MPT asks that they be sentenced to pay R$ 3 million, each, for “the failure of each to supervise the acts of the state-owned company’s leaders”.

Caixa Econômica Federal is also the target of the action. The MPT asks the state-owned company to pay R$ 305.3 million for compensation for collective moral damages for the practice of sexual harassment, moral harassment and discrimination. For the Public Prosecutor’s Office, the bank should be punished “by virtue of its joint and several liability for the act of its agent and for the failure to investigate such acts”.

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The action was presented to the Labor Court and is under legal secrecy. THE CNN had access to the request submitted by the MPT.

Since accusations of sexual harassment against Guimarães surfaced in June, the former president of Caixa has always denied that he had committed any crime. In a note sent to CNN this Thursday (29), the executive’s defense reinforced this position and called the action “electoral” (read more at the end of the report).

The MPT presented the report of dozens of witnesses who accuse Pedro Guimarães of having committed sexual harassment.

One of them, for example, stated that “with the uncomfortable hugs, Pedro [Guimarães] began to place his hand on the deponent’s waist; that Pedro said ‘I loved your clothes today’, put his hand on his waist and went down the body of the deponent; that the deponent took Pedro’s hand off her body; that, in another situation, inside Pedro’s room, while sitting on a chair, Pedro sat next to her and placed his hand on the deponent’s leg; that she reacted by taking Peter’s hand off her body.”

According to the MPT, female employees were victims of sexual harassment during the management of Pedro Guimarães, who at least one employee and one female employee were targets of physical aggression by the former president of Caixa, who broke cell phones in moments of anger and prohibited, from veiled form, the use of red.

Guimarães is also accused of treating state employees with shouts and profanity, of having committed moral harassment with employees who denied sexual advances and with the vice president of Caixa for taking measures based on internal complaints received.

Also according to the MPT, the annual average of leaves due to mental illness increased by about 27% in Guimarães’ administration and the annual average of complaints of harassment grew 303% while he was in charge of the state-owned company.

THE CNN contacted the defense of Pedro Guimarães and the press office of Caixa for a position of both the state and the other accused.

In a note, the defense of Guimarães said that “the Public Ministry, in a hasty manner and on the eve of the election, judges a manifestly unfounded and electoral action”.

“Pedro Guimarães, who together with his team won all the awards during his tenure at Caixa Econômica Federal, categorically denies the practice of any irregular act”, he added.

Caixa Econômica Federal and its Board of Directors responded that “they reiterate that they do not tolerate any type of misconduct on the part of their directors or employees and that, since they became aware of the accusations, they have taken all necessary measures to investigate the complaints, protect whistleblowers, bank employees and the Institution itself.”

“It is worth noting that, still on June 30, it was decided to hire an external auditor and then set up an independent committee to investigate all complaints. In addition, the whistleblowing channel, operated with a guarantee of secrecy, was reinforced with professionals specialized in welcoming potential victims”, says the note.

Source: CNN Brasil

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