Would-be whistleblower sues Bayer over firing

Pharma whistleblowers aren't just focused on alleged marketing shenanigans. Arcane accounting rules gets attention too. This time, the company is Bayer, and the whistleblower raised the red flag over compliance with the very complicated Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

In a federal lawsuit, plaintiff Ralph Fabiano claims that a senior Bayer executive told him to falsify the results of certain auditing and accounting tests, and he refused. After refusing repeatedly, he was fired, the suit alleges. And that act would be a violation of the Sarbanes-Oxley law's whistleblower provisions.

Bayer says that the U.S. Department of Labor had investigated Fabiano's claims, and cleared the company of wrongdoing in a June 17 letter. "Consistent with our company policy we do not comment on matters of active litigation; however, we will defend ourselves vigorously in this case," Bryan Iams, a Bayer spokesman, tells Reuters.

- read the Reuters story