As if hiring employees isn’t stressful enough, employers are now held responsible for crimes committed by staff at work, the supreme court has ruled in a case involving a Morrison’s customer who was subjected to a violent, racist assault.
Ahmed Mohamud, of Somali descent, had checked the air pressure in his tyres and then asked at the kiosk whether he could print off a document from a USB stick.
The unanimous judgment by the UK’s highest court confirms the far-reaching consequences of the principle of “vicarious liability” – where someone is held liable for another’s acts – and may make it easier for aggrieved customers to sue businesses in future.
Amjid Khan, the Morrison’s employee, refused and ordered Mohamud to drive away using “foul, racist and threatening language”. Khan followed Mohamud outside, pulled open the car’s passenger door and punched the customer in the head.
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