Mercedes ex-U.S. boss Lieb loses wrongful dismissal suit
Lieb is fighting to restore his damaged reputation.
FRANKFURT -- A German court rejected a wrongful dismissal lawsuit brought by former Mercedes-Benz USA boss Ernst Lieb against the brand's parent, Daimler.
Lieb, 57, was fired by Daimler in October 2011 amid claims he had improperly used company money to upgrade his home. Lieb, who spent five years as head of Mercedes in the United States, denied the allegations and sued Daimler.
On Thursday, a Stuttgart court dismissed Lieb's claim. It said: "In the view of the court, the allegations against the plaintiff are so serious that any further employment [at Daimler] would be unacceptable."
Daimler said Lieb used more than $100,000 in corporate funds to upgrade his company-owned home in Mahwah, New Jersey. At a hearing last November, Daimler alleged that Lieb used company money to pay for items such as a home theater system, a home gym, a washer and dryer and a built-in barbecue system.
A Daimler spokesman said at the time that Lieb was fired because he made "incomplete, inaccurate and manipulative" statements to the company and the responsible persons during a company audit of spending by overseas executives.
Lieb will appeal the court's ruling, his attorney Stefan Naegele told the Stuttgarter Zeitung newspaper, adding that the issue was not about money but repairing some of the damage done to Lieb's reputation by the allegations.
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