Ousted HP boss settles with accuser

City A.M. Reporter
HEWLETT-PACKARD’S former chief executive officer Mark Hurd has reached a legal settlement with the woman who accused him of sexual harassment, and she has also agreed to release HP from legal claims, according to sources familiar with the matter.

The world’s biggest computer maker stunned Wall Street and Silicon Valley on Friday by announcing Hurd’s resignation, accusing him of falsifying expense reports to conceal a “close personal relationship” with a female contractor.

The unidentified woman told HP’s board in June that Hurd had sexually harassed her, but an investigation found no violation of the company’s sexual harassment policy, HP said.

The contractor, who did marketing work for HP from 2007 to 2009, did not have sexual relations with Hurd, according to her lawyer Gloria Allred, a high-profile attorney who often works with celebrity clients.

“Mark has settled the matter with the woman,” said one source who was briefed on the matter. This person said the settlement included a payment, but the amount was not disclosed.

Another source with knowledge of the matter said HP was given a “release” by the contractor, and that the company had not paid her any money. This person also said Hurd had settled the matter. Both sources spoke on condition of anonymity.

Allred declined to comment.

According to sources, the contractor helped plan, market and host events for the office of the chief executive. She made the sexual harassment charges on June 29 in a letter addressed to Hurd that came to his office.

The board then ordered an investigation, which found inaccurate expense reports filed by Hurd or on his behalf, and instances where the contractor received compensation for no legitimate business purpose.