Bupa boss nearly lost his job in gay vendetta

Daily Mail - - News - By Fionn Har­g­reaves

THE chief ex­ec­u­tive of Bupa UK was al­most sacked af­ter a banker slept with his boyfriend and then launched a smear cam­paign against him.

But the banker, Paul Blight, 41, was con­victed of ha­rass­ment af­ter he claimed health boss David Hy­nam had car­ried out a ho­mo­pho­bic hate cam­paign.

Mr Hy­nam’s boyfriend Ross Levine, who had been in a re­la­tion­ship with him for nine years, had a one night stand with Blight in Fe­bru­ary last year. But mag­is­trates heard how Mr Levine blocked Blight’s phone num­ber fol­low­ing their ren­dezvous be­cause Blight kept call­ing and tex­ting him.

While Mr Levine was on hol­i­day last De­cem­ber, the banker then hand­de­liv­ered a let­ter to his mother’s house, even though he had never been told where she lived.

Mr Levine didn’t hear from Blight again un­til April, when he re­ceived an email which said: ‘ Call me or come and see me, I do not ap­pre­ci­ate be­ing at­tacked by you and your fam­ily for over 300 days.’

The cou­ple, who live in Bournemouth, blocked his email ad­dress, but did not go to the po­lice.

How­ever two weeks later, Mr Hy­nam was called out of a meet­ing at work and told se­ri­ous al­le­ga­tions had been made against him. Blight claimed in a let­ter that a hate crime had been run­ning for 320 days but the court heard the po­lice had no record of the al­leged crime. Fol­low­ing the al­le­ga­tions, Mr Hy­nam was placed un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion at work and faced los­ing his job. Jen­nie Hop­son-Hill, pros­e­cut­ing, told Poole mag­is­trates: ‘Mr Levine had a one night oc­cur­rence with this de­fen­dant [Blight] in Fe­bru­ary 2016 but af­ter that night he only saw him if there was other mu­tual friends around. In June he asked Mr Levine to meet for cof­fee. Dur­ing this meet­ing Mr Levine said he was very in­tense and wanted to start a re­la­tion­ship but he told him he was not in­ter­ested. ‘Af­ter con­stant calls and texts, Mr Levine went on to block him from ev­ery so­cial me­dia and means of con­tact pos­si­ble. ‘On April 12 Mr Blight sent a let­ter di­rect to Bupa stat­ing Mr Hy­nam was in­volved in a ho­mo­pho­bic and dis­crim­i­na­tion hate crime against him.

‘He said the hate crime had been run­ning for 320 days and he had re­ported it to the po­lice.

Miss Hop­son-Hill added: ‘The let­ter had a ca­reer threat­en­ing im­pact on Mr Hy­nam due to the very high pro­file role he held. He was un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion at one point as well but it didn’t go ahead. Mr Hy­nam and Mr Levine were ex­tremely dis­tressed by this be­hav­iour.’

Mag­is­trates found Blight guilty of ha­rass­ing Mr Levine over a four­month pe­riod from De­cem­ber 2016 to April 1 this year and send­ing a let­ter which con­veyed false in­for­ma­tion in re­la­tion to Mr Hy­nam.

Blight, who rep­re­sented him­self, said he didn’t think his be­hav­iour to­wards Mr Levine con­sti­tuted ha­rass­ment and the let­ter was not sent to Mr Hy­nam but to the board of di­rec­tors and data pro­tec­tion laws should pro­tect him un­til the case was in­ves­ti­gated.

Blight said he planned to ap­peal the de­ci­sion. Mag­is­trates gave him a four-month prison sen­tence, sus­pended for 12 months, and or­dered him to carry out 150 hours of un­paid work.

He was also given a two-year re­strain­ing or­der ban­ning him from con­tact­ing ei­ther Mr Levine or Mr Hy­nam, or go­ing to their home.

Ac­cu­sa­tions: Paul Blight, left, and Bupa UK CEO David Hy­nam

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