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03rd March 2011

Businessman denies unfair dismissal

A businessman accused of issuing unfair dismissal believes he is "on trial" over business dealings, a tribunal has been told.

Kevin Cash denies actually employing the two workers accusing him of unfair dismissal from work at North Aston Hall, a grand estate in Oxfordshire.

Francisco and Maria de Sousa, originally from Portugal, claim they were sacked by Mr Cash from the estate, where they were based from September 2006, with no severance pay or references.

Mr Cash's lawyers said he denied owning the estate and was therefore not liable. The estate is held in the Cash family trust.

James Wynne, representing Mr de Sousa, suggested millionaire Mr Cash operated in this "arm's length" manner with many companies and the company which he claimed employed Mr de Sousa was "directed in the same way that he directs all the other companies in his business empire." Mr Cash was "the controller and the owner" of these companies, which released to him whatever funds he asked for.

He said: "He did act as if he was the employer."

David Flood, representing Mr Cash at the tribunal in Reading, said: "It appears that the claimant is attempting to use this tribunal as a form of effectively putting him on trial generally as to his business and financial dealings, and using as justification the claimant's own decision not to accept that he was employed by a company rather than Mr Cash."

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