Alphabet board investigates company’s handling of sexual misconduct allegations

Alphabet board investigates company's handling of sexual misconduct allegations

The board of Google parent company Alphabet Inc. is investigating executives’ handling of sexual harassment and other misconduct claims, and expects to complete its probe by early December, according to a recent court filing.

CNBC first reported the investigation on Wednesday, citing unspecified materials that added that the board had retained an unnamed law firm to assist with the investigation.

Alphabet’s board formed a special litigation committee this spring after shareholders filed a lawsuit alleging that company directors played direct roles in covering up sexual misconduct by top executives, according to a filing in the lawsuit from last month. The committee is working with law firm Cravath Swaine & Moore, the filing said.

It is unclear whether Cravath or the special litigation committee have interviewed any alleged victims, witnesses or accused executives, some of whom are no longer at Alphabet.

Alphabet spokeswoman Heather Dickinson did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Board investigations include looking into the behaviour of Google’s chief legal officer David Drummond, seen in this 2014 file photo, who is accused of having relationships with employees. (Eric Piermont/AFP via Getty Images)

The board investigation includes looking into the behaviour of David Drummond,¬†Google’s chief legal officer, who has been accused of having relationships with employees, CNBC said.

Drummond has acknowledged some mistakes with a relationship he had with a colleague, but said he has not started a relationship with any co-workers since then.

The shareholders who sued Alphabet leadership are awaiting the results of the internal investigation as they decide how to proceed with the case. They have called for various governance reforms at the company, including reducing executives’ voting control and adding more independent directors.

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