Former Namco Employee Sues Company for Alleged Racism - Report
CEO reportedly said, "Japan should have bombed Pearl Harbor again."
A former Vietnamese-American Bandai Namco employee has sued the Pac-Man publisher, claiming the company fired him after a long run of discriminatory events, according to a new report from MyNewsLA.
The employee, Tony Le, filed his lawsuit with the Los Angeles Superior Court, naming the publisher's American division and a number of his former bosses in the claim.
The suit's list of allegations is long, including discrimination; harassment and retaliation based on race and national origin; failure to prevent discrimination; wrongful termination; failure to promote; and negligent hiring and supervision. He is seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
Le started at Bandai Namco as a senior business analyst in 2010. He worked there for four years and became a "top performer for Bandai with a proven track record," according to the suit. But, not long after joining the company, things reportedly went south.
"Le alleges he noticed a continuing 'pattern and practice of disparate treatment' against non-Japanese employees. Le and other employees who were not Japanese were subjected to verbal abuse in Japanese, condescending gestures and 'obscene laughter,' the suit alleges."
"In 2013, Bandai's former CEO, Matsuo Masayaka, told Le, 'All you Americans are so stupid and don't know how to run a business'; "If I could I would fire all the Americans'; and 'Japan should have bombed Pearl Harbor again,' the suit alleges."
Le also says in his lawsuit that Bandai Namco denied him access to some important company information and was purposefully excluded from meetings and dinners because only Japanese employees were invited.
"The company gave preferential treatment to Japanese employees when granting promotions and fired those who were not Japanese more often, according to the lawsuit," MyNewsLA writes.
Le goes on to say in his lawsuit that he spoke to Bandai Namco's human resources department about his concerns, but he met resistance here, too. He was reportedly told to "remain silent" and was discouraged for lodging a formal, written complaint.
He was officially let go from the company in March 2014. We've reached out to Bandai for comment and will update this post with anything we hear back.
For lots more on this story, be sure to read MyNewsLA's full report.
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