Tuesday 2 August 2022 09:21 PM Senior adviser unfairly sacked after branding Labour MP boss a 'first class ... trends now

Tuesday 2 August 2022 09:21 PM Senior adviser unfairly sacked after branding Labour MP boss a 'first class ... trends now
Tuesday 2 August 2022 09:21 PM Senior adviser unfairly sacked after branding Labour MP boss a 'first class ... trends now

Tuesday 2 August 2022 09:21 PM Senior adviser unfairly sacked after branding Labour MP boss a 'first class ... trends now

A senior adviser was unfairly sacked after branding her Labour MP boss a 'first class idiot' in an email copied into Sir Keir Starmer, an employment tribunal has ruled.

Khalid Mahmood fired his long-term aide Elaina Cohen after she sent him a series of messages accusing him of being 'cruel', 'bullying', 'spiteful' and and an 'insecure crooked womaniser'. 

The former shadow Cabinet member - an MP for more than 20 years - dismissed Ms Cohen, who he had previously dated for several years, for disrespecting and trying to intimidate him.

But the tribunal ruled that by overseeing the disciplinary process himself and deciding to fire her, the 61-year-old had treated her unfairly.

In addition, the MP's decision to stop talking to her after she accused one of his parliamentary staff of being involved in illegal activity made her feel isolated, the panel ruled.

He will now have to pay her compensation, although the amount may be reduced due to her behaviour, the tribunal said.

The hearing in central London was told that Ms Cohen started to work for the MP for Birmingham Perry Bar in his House of Commons office in 2003.

They entered a 'romantic relationship' shortly afterwards which ended in 2005 at the earliest, the panel was told.

Khalid Mahmood fired his long-term aide Elaina Cohen (after she sent him a series of messages accusing him of being ‘cruel’, ‘bullying’, ‘spiteful’ and and an ‘insecure crooked womaniser’

Khalid Mahmood fired his long-term aide Elaina Cohen (after she sent him a series of messages accusing him of being 'cruel', 'bullying', 'spiteful' and and an 'insecure crooked womaniser'

Following their break-up, Ms Cohen continued to work for Mr Mahmood but their relationship became increasingly 'dysfunctional' with multiple Whatsapp messages and emails exchanged.

'(Ms Cohen) frequently fumed and ruminated in such communications making bitter and provocative remarks directed at (Mr Mahmood) mixed in with information relating to the business of his office,' the tribunal heard. '(He) rarely replied.'

For example, in a WhatsApp message sent on 2 January 2020, Ms Cohen wrote: 'So sorry to remind you that I'm a member of your staff I haven't heard from you in relation to Parliament since election.

'If this continues I'm just going to do my own thing as I have since 2005 when you decided I was surplus to requirements due to favours & new female admirers & girlfriends.. happy new year.'

The tribunal was told that in 2019 Mr Mahmood had given a parliamentary pass to a charity worker, Saraya Hussain, with whom Ms Cohen clashed.

In January 2020 Ms Cohen met with a whistleblower who alleged Ms Hussain had been blackmailing, grooming and bullying vulnerable charity service users.

She reported what she had been told to West Midlands police and told Mr Mahmood that vulnerable individuals had been encouraged to shoplift, as well as making allegations of charity fraud.

However, the police investigation came to nothing and Ms Cohen said Mr Mahmood 'went ballistic and accused me of lying. He accused me of making more trouble for Saraya Hussain because I was jealous.'

As part of that exchange Mr Mahmood copied in Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer (pictured) into an email that referenced her 'first class idiot' comment

As part of that exchange Mr Mahmood copied in Labour

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