McDonald’s CEO who was sacked for relationship responds to their lawsuit against him

A former McDonald’s chief executive has asked a US court to dismiss the company’s lawsuit against him for allegedly having sexual relationships with employees.

The fast food giant sued Stephen Easterbrook last week in an attempt to reclaim millions of dollars in compensation paid to him following his firing last November.

The 52-year-old Briton was sacked after he admitted to exchanging videos and text messages in a consensual, non-physical relationship with an employee, which a search of his phone confirmed.

Mr Easterbrook, who grew up in Watford, Hertfordshire, was allowed to keep more than $42m (£32m) in stock-based benefits after he said the relationship was consensual but admitted it violated company rules.

He also received 26 weeks of pay, amounting to about $670,000 (£503,000).

McDonald’s said it conducted another investigation last month after it received an anonymous tip that Mr Easterbrook had a physical relationship with another employee.

The company alleges it has since found that its former chief executive had sexual relationships with three employees and destroyed the evidence.

McDonald’s board said it would not have agreed to Mr Easterbrook’s separation agreement if it had that information when he was fired.

The company has also accused him of approving an “extraordinary” stock grant worth hundreds of thousands of dollars for one of the employees during their alleged affair.

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