Toyota Settles Sexual Harassment Case

Toyota Settles Sexual Harassment Case

A former Toyota employee who filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against one of the company’s top executives reached a settlement with the automaker late last week.

Sayaka Kobayashi, 42, served as an assistant to Hideaki Otaka, who was then the president and chief executive of Toyota Motor North America. According to her claim, he sexually groped her at Washington Hotel and in Central Park.

The lawsuit also claimed that Otaka required Kobayashi to accompany him to social functions and would arrange travel and office schedules so that they would be alone together.

She filed a sexual harassment case against Toyota in May, seeking nearly $200 million in damages. The carmaker, which has a “zero tolerance” policy on sexual harassment, called the lawsuit “embarrassing”.

A statement released by both parties on Friday said that Toyota and Ms. Kobayashi had reached a settlement.

“We are very pleased to have resolved this matter in a way that all parties have agreed is fair, appropriate and mutually satisfactory to all concerned,” the statement said.

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