Orthodox Banker Files $40M Suit Over BNP Paribas 'Nazi' Training Video

Executive Fired After Complaining About 'Downfall' Satire

By JTA

Published June 09, 2014.
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A former executive at BNP Paribas North America Inc. filed a federal lawsuit alleging that he was fired by the bank after complaining about a training video that featured Nazi imagery.

Jean-Marc Orlando said in the suit filed Friday in Manhattan U.S. District Court that he was terminated as managing director in the bank’s fixed-income division in New York after complaining about the video portraying the head of a competing bank as Hitler, Reuters reported. Orlando, who was fired in 2012, had worked for the bank for 18 years, including in France.

He is seeking $40 million in monetary and punitive damages, according to Reuters.

Orlando, who is Orthodox Jewish, in the suit said the video was his “worst nightmare,” Reuters reported. He and other managers watched the video at a training meeting in Amsterdam in 2011.

According to the lawsuit, the video created by BNP employees parodied the 2004 film “Downfall,” which depicted the final days of Adolf Hitler’s Nazi regime.

Following his complaints about the video, the bank gave him an “unusually and suspiciously poor performance evaluation,” the suit alleged.

A BNP spokeswoman in New York told Reuters that she had not seen a copy of the complaint and that the bank does not comment on pending litigation.


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