A man claims to have romped with a shop worker on the store’s display mattresses, but the woman who won an appeal after being dismissed from the store is now saying that she has nothing but an “unfailing professional conscience”.
It was at a ‘Le Roi du matelas’ (The King of Mattresses) shop in Boulogne-sur-Mer, France, in January 2017, when its manager received an email from a man who explained that he was the lover of a shop employee.
The man ‘David M’ claimed to have had several sexual encounters with the woman at her workplace during her lunch breaks on the store’s display mattresses.
Local media L’Informé reported that he attached nude photos of the employee to his e-mail (she has lodged a complaint) and it also confirmed that the employee had been dismissed for serious misconduct.
The man is also said to have left comments on websites, damaging the brand’s reputation.
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He said: “Don’t hesitate to buy the Darwin mattress. I tested it a dozen times with the shop assistant… It’s great, but don’t buy the display mattress, it’s been ruined…”.
Before a court in Tourcoing in March 2019, the employee ‘Céline D’ denied the facts and contested her dismissal, accusing the company of making unfounded accusations against her and relying solely on what the man said.
The man, who was himself dismissed for serious misconduct in 2013, constantly repeats his statements and is a former sales assistant with the company,
On 20 March, 2019, the court finally ruled in favour of the retailer.
But the employee did not stop there and appealed.
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In June 2021, the Douai Court of Appeal ruled that the dismissal for serious misconduct was “devoid of real and serious cause” and ordered the company to pay her more than €30,000 in severance pay and damages.
Céline D. won the appeal, having lost the first round.
Now the Court of Cassation has overturned the appeal judgement for “using terms incompatible with the requirement of impartiality”.
It stated that the sales assistant was “driven by an irrepressible desire to appreciate the fair value” of the mattresses on display because of her “unfailing professional conscience”.
The case will now be retried.
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