A former tech employee is suing her former boss and company for age discrimination and being wrongly fired after she spoke out about how the CEO would allegedly expense personal items to the company.
Ana Ruggiero told NBC Bay Area that in her job as an executive assistant at Identiv, she was routinely included in processing all kinds of expenses for then CEO and current president Jason Hart.
She says she began to raise red flags when she started noticing that Hart was submitting personal expenses to Identiv, the global security technology company, for reimbursement.
In the lawsuit filed with the Alameda County Superior Court against her ex-boss and the company, Ruggiero alleges that she was fired in ‘retaliation for her complaints about Hart’s unlawful and fraudulent conduct in addition to age discrimination,’ NBC Bay Area reported.
Ana Ruggiero (above) is suing her former boss and company for fraud after she spoke out about how the CEO would allegedly expense personal items to the company
She claims that in her job as an executive assistant at Identiv, she was routinely included in processing all kinds of expenses for then CEO and current president Jason Hart
‘It was unethical what he was doing,’ Ruggiero told the television station.
Ruggiero claims that Hart spent company money on personal expenses, wild parties in Las Vegas, dinners and gifts for a government official.
In her lawsuit, she claims that Hart’s personal expenses included five to six servers purchased on eBay for $18,000 each that ‘were at his home’ and never ‘part of Identiv’s information technology system,’ NBC Bay Area reported.
Jason Hart is the current president of Identiv and is being sued by Ana Ruggiero
Ruggiero also said that Hart purchased $3,000 in American Express gift cards that were going to be designated for ‘rewarding employees.’
However, she alleges that the gift cards went to his groundskeeper because he ‘owed him money.’
‘The company didn’t benefit from it. It was his lifestyle that was being funded,’ Ruggiero told NBC Bay Area.
Also in the lawsuit, Ruggiero claims that Hart had an improper relationship with a government official.
Hart allegedly used Identiv money to pay for gifts and travel for ‘a contact in the United States government believed to have been … influential in assisting Identiv obtain certain government contracts worth millions of dollars,’ according to NBC Bay Area.
John Bailey, a former employee with the US Marshals Service under the Department of Justice, would frequent Identiv events, dinners and parties in Las Vegas, Ruggiero claims.
‘Jason mentioned to me that Mr. Bailey was an influential person in purchasing, specifically the products that we sold,’ Ruggiero told NBC Bay Area as she detailed a Fourth of July pool party in 2014 at Wet Republic in the MGM Grand Las Vegas.
She provided documents that she claims Hart gave her to use for reimbursement of thousands of dollars from Identiv.
Ruggiero claims that Hart spent company money on personal expenses, wild parties in Las Vegas, dinners and gifts for a government official. Above is a picture of an invoice Ruggiero allegedly has showing the cost of alcohol spent at a Las Vegas party Hart attended
According to its website, Identiv is ‘a global security technology company that establishes identity in the connected world, including premises, information, and everyday items.’ Above is pictured the company’s headquarters in Fremont, California
NBC Bay Area reported from the records that Ruggiero provided that the bar bill was $8,700, ‘including four magnum-sized bottles of vodka and champagne, plus 10 more bottles of bubbly for a poolside ‘champagne shower.”
They also appeared to show that Bailey’s airfare and itinerary were included in those documents.
‘It’s a conflict of interest,’ Ruggiero told NBC Bay Area. ‘You cannot intermingle with a government official.’
Bailey would not comment about the allegations in the lawsuit filed by Ruggiero.
In a statement from the U.S. Marshals Service, spokesman Drew J. Wade told NBC Bay Area: ‘John Bailey was employed by the US Marshals Service from September 2011 to April 2015.
‘The Marshals Service takes seriously any allegations of misconduct by its employees and, when made aware, takes appropriate steps to address the actions.
In her lawsuit, she claims that Hart’s personal expenses also included five to six servers purchased on eBay for $18,000 each that ‘were at his home’ and never ‘part of Identiv’s information technology system’
Ruggiero also claims that Gary Kremen (above), who serves on the board of directors for Identiv and is also the founder of match.com partied with Hart and Bailey in Las Vegas during the Fourth of July 2014
‘We are seeking Department of Justice Office of Inspector General review of the matter.’
When Hart became the company’s CEO in May 2011, Identiv and its subsidiaries have been awarded a total of $11,746,586.46 in federal contracts, according to the federal website that tracks government contracts.
Those deals include both the Department of Justice and the General Services Administration, which is where Bailey is currently employed, NBC Bay Area reported.
There is a law in place that prohibits federal employees from accepting gifts that exceed $50 from a single source a year and also requires gifts to be reported.
Jason Hart did not respond to NBC Bay Area’s request for comment.
Ruggiero also claims that Gary Kremen, who serves on the board of directors for Identiv and is also the founder of match.com partied with Hart and Bailey in Las Vegas during the Fourth of July 2014.
She claims that Kremen, who is also chairman of the Board of Directors for the Santa Clara Valley Water District, did not hold back while partying.
‘In fact, Gary Kremen is the one who had the massages,’ Ruggiero told NBC Bay Area.
In her lawsuit, she alleges that Kremen received $1,900 in massages alone and that she was instructed by Hart to submit the bill to Identiv for payment.
A response has not been filed by Identiv to Ruggiero’s complaint, but a motion to move the case to arbitration was granted, NBC Bay Area reported.
She claims that Kremen (above), who is also chairman of the Board of Directors for the Santa Clara Valley Water District, did not hold back while partying