Wal-Mart asserted yesterday in a court filing that two of its former top marketing officials had engaged in a sexual relationship during the process of selecting new advertising agencies and had sought jobs with one of the agencies they ultimately recommended.
The legal brief directly contradicted the statements the executives have made since they were fired late last year.
Wal-Mart accused Julie Roehm and Sean Womack, the two executives, of extending their visits with Draft FCB, an ad agency involved in the review, to spend more personal time together and to promote themselves to the agency as job candidates.
“Instead of working solely in Wal-Mart’s interest,” the company said, Ms. Roehm “frequently put her own first. She did not merely fail to avoid conflicts of interest, she invited them.”
Wal-Mart backed up its assertions with what it said were e-mail messages sent by Ms. Roehm and Mr. Womack, both married, from their work and private accounts.
“I hate not being able to call you or write you,” Ms. Roehm wrote early last fall, according to an e-mail message Mr. Womack’s wife provided to Wal-Mart. “I think about us together all the time. Little moments like watching your face when you kiss me.”
Reached yesterday in Las Vegas, Ms. Roehm denied Wal-Mart’s accusations of an affair with Mr. Womack, and she said she had not had job discussions with Draft FCB.