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Wednesday, 31 October, 2001, 12:58 GMT
Post Office refuses to reinstate worker
Post Office Counter
Mr Doherty worked as a counter clerk at the Post Office
A postal worker has been told he will not be allowed back to work after being accused of football hooliganism - despite a ruling by an employment tribunal.

Michael Doherty, from London, won his claim for unfair dismissal against Royal Mail, now known as Consignia, earlier in the year.

Last year Mr Doherty was dismissed after a photograph appeared in newspapers apparently showing him involved in clashes between football supporters.

He claimed he had been acting in self-defence after the UEFA Cup final between Arsenal and Galatasaray in Copenhagen in May 2000.

We went to an independent arbitrary body and they've ruled in my favour and a body like the Post Office should abide by the decision

Michael Doherty
On Friday an employment tribunal ruled he should be reinstated as a counter clerk at the Post Office and receive compensation.

But Mr Doherty has received a letter saying it would be "impractical" for him to return to his old job.

He told the BBC that he would be consulting his solicitors before deciding what to do next.

Mr Doherty said: "I was never arrested, apprehended or convicted of any offence.

"The Post Office have took it upon themselves to dismiss me.

'Disgraceful act'

"We went to an independent arbitrary body and they've ruled in my favour and a body like the Post Office should abide by the decision."

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) had said a deal was agreed with Consignia for Mr Doherty to return to work next month and receive 15,000 in compensation.

John Keggie, deputy general secretary of the CWU, said: "The decision to rescind that without any explanation to us or to Mr Doherty is a disgraceful act.

"They are supposed to be fair employers but they have not acted fairly in this case."

Mr Keggie said he would discuss the issue with the union's executive with a view to putting pressure on Consignia to reinstate Mr Doherty.

Following the same incident Mr Doherty's brother Tom, who is a postal worker, was also sacked.

He also won his case of unfair dismissal and a tribunal will decide on Friday whether he should be reinstated.

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