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Suspended boss fights probe into 'rudeness'

A vice president of a mobile phone firm -- who is accused of being rude, aggressive and unprofessional to customers -- wants a High Court injunction stopping what she says is a potentially biased inquiry by her bosses.

Kathryn Smith, operations vice president of Adaptive Mobile Security Limited, is seeking orders restraining her employer from removing her from her post.

Also that she be allowed to perform her duties without interference.

She is also seeking an order restraining Adaptive and its CEO, Brian Collins, from carrying out an investigation into her conduct. The injunctions are to stay in place pending the full hearing of her action against Adaptive -- a Dublin-based company that specialises in mobile phone technology.

The company, represented by Martin Hayden, has opposed her application.

It argues it was entitled to suspend Ms Smith and that she is seeking to prevent a fact-finding investigation arising out of complaints from two important US-based customers.

The company claims her suspension is not a disciplinary measure imposed as the result of an alleged wrongdoing but rather is a temporary measure while inquires are being carried out.

Oisin Quinn, for Ms Smith, said she was suspended on July 26 and told by the company's CEO, Brian Collins, that he would conduct an inquiry into complaints she had been rude and had displayed an unprofessional attitude while dealing with two customers.


Mr Quinn said Ms Smith denies the claims against her and says the alleged issues under consideration do not warrant a suspension, or an investigation, and says the complaints against her are "without foundation".

Mr Collins and his client had a bad relationship from his arrival in the company in 2009, and it had become "poisonous" in 2011, he said.

The case before Mr Justice Roderick Murphy continues.