Court rejects Lieber argument Harvard must pay legal fees

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The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court sided with Harvard University in a lawsuit brought by chemistry professor Charles Lieber seeking to force the university to pay its legal fees.

Lieber was convicted last month for lying to federal authorities about his links to a Chinese talent science program and for failing to report his tax income.

In a decision published Monday, Massachusetts’ highest court found Harvard acted in accordance with its compensation policy in determining that it was “reasonably likely” that Lieber would ultimately not be eligible for compensation and therefore was not entitled advance payment of legal fees.

The opinion states that Harvard Executive President Katherine N. Lapp “determined that compensation was eligible for exclusion under one of the many exceptions set out in the policy, including where a qualified person is judged or determined to have failed to act in good faith. or in a reasonable belief that his actions were in the best interests of Harvard; is judged or determined to have committed criminal misconduct, intentional wrongdoing, recklessness or gross negligence; or is found guilty of committing an act or omission that he knew or should have known was a violation of Harvard policies. “

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