Oracle Australia sex harassment case slips again

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Oracle Australia sex harassment case slips again

Hearing not set.

A sexual harassment lawsuit against Oracle Australia has been relisted for directions in the Federal Court amid concerns that its progress had stalled.

Former Oracle Australia program manager Rebecca Richardson was seeking an estimated $450,000 in damages for alleged sexual discrimination and breach of contract.

The salesman accused of harassing her, Randol Tucker, denied the claims.

In a directions hearing today, Richardson's barrister Rachel Francois conceded the case "did slip over Christmas" in response to an observation by Justice Robert Buchanan that "on the face of things it's been moving, if not rapidly, then steadily".

Similar "slippage" in timetables was noted at the last directions hearing in October of last year.

Issues with evidence collection also continued to impact the case.

"There is an issue about the second respondent's [Tucker's] discovery – they've discovered nothing," Francois told the court.

"There's just manifest problems with what the second respondent has done."

Tucker's legal representative said she had "not received any correspondence from the applicant [Richardson] save for an email from counsel at 5.36PM yesterday."

"We've not heard anything about the matter for the last four months," she said.

Justice Buchanan said he "just wanted a general feeling if the matter was ready for general hearings" with a view to adding dates to the court list.

He did not set a date for hearings, instead allowing an application by Oracle's barrister Elizabeth Raper to extend the deadline for lay evidence by a month until July 22.

Justice Buchanan continued to implore the parties to work towards an agreement.

The matter was re-listed for further directions on August 12.

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