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Motorola Ex-CFO Lawsuit: Paul Liska Sues Company For Firing Him

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NEW YORK — Motorola Inc.'s former chief financial officer has sued the company for firing him, claiming that it was a "retaliatory discharge."

Paul Liska sued the maker of telecommunications equipment in county court in Chicago on Feb. 20, a day after he was fired. The suit is under seal, and no further details were available Friday. Liska did not return calls for comment, and the company did not return an e-mail.

A "retaliatory discharge" usually refers to an employee being fired for doing something that's in the public interest, like being a whistleblower.

Schaumburg, Ill.-based Motorola said in early February that Liska was leaving after less than a year of service. It didn't specify a cause, but Chief Executive Greg Brown implied on a conference call that it was connected to the delayed spin-off of the company's cell phone unit. Liska, a former partner at private equity companies, was seen as a restructuring expert.

However, Motorola revealed in a filing this week that it had terminated Liska "for cause," depriving him of his signing bonus, stock options and severance payment. It didn't specify the cause.

The Wall Street Journal quoted Liska as saying he had been told he been terminated on Jan. 29 without cause. There was no explanation for the discrepancy in dates on when Liska was terminated.

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