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Female Yahoo executive sued by former female colleague over sexual harassment claims

Former engineer, Nan Shi, claims that her boss, Maria Zhang, coerced her into having digital and oral sex

A female executive from the web giant Yahoo is being sued by a former colleague who accuses her of sexual harassment and wrongful termination.

Maria Zhang, who works as a director of engineering at Yahoo Mobile, has been sued by Nan Shi, who worked below her as a software engineer at the company based in Sunnyvale, California.

According to the complaint filed on July 8, Shi alleges that Zhang coerced her to have digital and oral sex on a number of occasions and said that she was told by Zhang that she would have a “bright future” at Yahoo if she agreed to have sex with her.

The complaint by Shi also says that Zhang unfairly downgraded her performance reviews in the second and third quarters of 2013.

Yahoo is also named as a defendant in the suit and Shi accuses the company’s human resources department of not carrying out a proper investigation, even after she had made them aware of Zhang’s sexual advances.

Shi insists that she was, instead, put on unpaid leave and then eventually released by the company.

In response to the accusations, Yahoo released an email that said there was “absolutely no basis or truth behind the allegations”, and that they would “fight vigorously” to clear the name of Zhang - who it described as “an exemplary Yahoo executive”.

Additional reporting by Reuters