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Judge orders letter accusing former HP CEO Mark Hurd of harassment to be unsealed

March 18, 2011 |  3:26 pm

Getprev A Delaware judge on Thursday ordered the unsealing of a letter which outlines allegations of sexual harassment by a marketing contractor that ultimately led to the abrupt resignation of former Hewlett-Packard Chief Executive Mark Hurd in August.

Jodie Fisher, a former HP marketing contractor, accused Hurd last year of sexual harassment last year in the letter sent by Fisher's high-profile lawyer Gloria Allred to Hurd. An investigation by HP concluded that Hurd did not violate the tech giant's harassment policy but found "numerous instances" in which he submitted faulty expense reports meant to conceal his "close, personal relationship" with the contractor, the company said at the time.

Hurd and his attorneys have 10 days to contest the ruling. Amy Wintersheimer, a Hurd attorney, said in a statement Friday that she planned to appeal the decision.

"We believe the letter, which was clearly marked 'confidential,' should remain that way," Wintersheimer said. "As has been admitted the letter contains many inaccuracies. Mr. Hurd long ago resolved the matter and has moved on."


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Photo: Former Hewlett-Packard Chief Executive Officer Mark Hurd smiles at a news conference announcing his appointment at HP headquarters in Palo Alto on March 30, 2005. Credit: Lou DeMatteis / Reuters