BNP Paribas’ London head of legal for debt and equity has left the bank several months after his description of an Asian colleague as ‘Hu She’ in an internal email.
Benedict Foster had been at the French-headquartered banking heavyweight for just over 22 years. He had previously spent six years at Linklaters.
Following the incident, first reported by the Telegraph, he was “censured” by the bank and ”had to complete additional training following a detailed investigation by senior executives outside of his own function”, according to a spokesperson for BNP Paribas on Wednesday.
He has now retired from the outfit, according to his LinkedIn profile and the bank spokesperson. He did not respond to a message on LinkedIn and Law.com International was unable to contact him on email.
Conduct of senior lawyers has come under more scrutiny in recent years, with several high-profile investigations hitting the industry.
Clyde & Co senior partner Peter Hirst faced an internal probe into his conduct, which included allegations of bullying, at the time of his retirement announcement in December 2021, Law.com International revealed at the start of 2022.
Meanwhile between 2019 and 2020, three Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer partners left the firm following unlinked internal investigations and Baker McKenzie was subject to intense scrutiny over historical allegations of misconduct by its former London head Gary Senior. He was fined £55,000 by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal but not banned from working in the legal profession in 2020 for inappropriate behaviour towards a junior colleague at the firm in 2012.