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Retrial ordered in bias case against noted restaurant group

SAN FRANCISCO — A California judge is ordering a retrial in a pregnancy discrimination case brought against the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group.

The celebrated chef and his acclaimed restaurants — Per Se in New York and the French Laundry in California — were cleared of wrongdoing by a jury in a June trial, which the plaintiff Vanessa Scott-Allen then appealed.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports Wednesday that Napa County Superior Court judge Victoria Wood agreed with Scott-Allen’s argument that there was not enough evidence to justify the verdict. She says there was misconduct by the jury and defense counsel.

Scott-Allen worked at Per Se for five years before requesting a transfer to Keller’s Napa Valley restaurant. She claimed she was let go after telling her bosses she was pregnant.

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