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ACC is watching review, but continuing to use Russell McVeagh
ACC is awaiting the outcome of an independent review by Dame Margaret Bazley following serious allegations of sexual harassment at Russell McVeagh.
In the meantime we will continue to use particular lawyers from the firm whose expertise or experience makes them best suited to do the work.
ACC General Counsel Aedeen Boadita-Cormican says Russell McVeagh has lawyers with expertise in a wide range of legal areas, and is a member of the All of Government External Legal Services panel.
“Russell McVeagh has provided legal services to ACC in the corporate, investments and litigation areas for several years. We select our external lawyers based on their individual professional experience, expertise and the quality of the service they provide.
“Our intention is to continue to use lawyers at the firm, but we were deeply concerned on hearing of the allegations, and obviously we’re continuing to monitor the situation very closely.”
We first became aware of the allegations of sexual harassment at Russell McVeagh through media coverage on 15 February.
“Russell McVeagh contacted us that day, and advised that a full investigation had been carried out at the time the allegations were made, two years previously. They confirmed to us their commitment to addressing any issues of harassment at Russell McVeagh, and in the legal profession generally,” Ms Boadita-Cormican says.
“We’ve never experienced any issues regarding the conduct of Russell McVeagh staff, and we’ve been satisfied with the services provided.
“Nevertheless, we’re extremely concerned at the allegations, and soon after we became aware of the issues, I met with a partner at the firm to seek further information and reassurance from her.
“We’ve also confirmed that neither of the men at the centre of the allegations has ever been instructed by ACC.”
ACC has spent approximately $5.57 million with Russell McVeagh over the past five financial years.