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Former Apple Engineer Accuses Company of Defamatory Statements Over Dismissal

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The prominent advertising-technology engineer let go by

Apple Inc.

AAPL 1.98%

this week amid an uproar over sexist passages in his memoir fired back at the tech giant, calling the company’s statements around his dismissal “defamatory and categorically false.”

Apple said Wednesday it had parted ways with

Antonio García Martínez,

who had been hired about a month ago to work on ad platforms. His departure followed complaints by some workers at Apple about sexist and misogynistic passages in a memoir Mr. García Martínez wrote about his time at

Facebook.

FB 3.50%

“At Apple, we have always strived to create an inclusive, welcoming workplace where everyone is respected and accepted. Behavior that demeans or discriminates against people for who they are has no place here,” the iPhone maker said.

Mr. García Martínez, however, disputed Apple’s version of events. “I did not ‘part ways’ with Apple. I was fired by Apple in a snap decision,” he wrote on his verified

Twitter

account Friday. “Apple has issued a statement that clearly implies there was some negative behavior by me during my time at Apple. That is defamatory and categorically false.”

In one passage of his book, “Chaos Monkeys,” which was marketed as nonfiction, Mr. García Martínez wrote: “Most women in the Bay Area are soft and weak, cosseted and naive despite their claims of worldliness, and generally full of shit.”

In an interview Friday after his tweets, Mr. García Martínez, 45 years old, said Apple was aware of his book before hiring him and the company had recruited and vetted him with his references, asking them questions about things he had written in his book and whether that was his real persona.

“That book is not me now, it wasn’t even me then,” he said. “To be honest, there was a literary persona. I was trying to create a style in my naive, first-time book writer sort of way, which in retrospect, I think was a mistake and I regret much of it.”

Earlier this week, some Apple employees communicated their unhappiness with his hiring, including in a letter o Apple senior executive Eddy Cue, who oversees internet software and services, asking for an investigation into how Mr. García Martínez was hired.

Apple said Mr. García Martínez was no longer with the company after technology-news site the Verge reported on the letter.

Apple didn’t immediately respond Friday to a request for comment about Mr. García Martínez’s tweets.

“I upended my life for Apple,” he wrote on Twitter. “I sold my WA residence which I built with my own hands, relocated myself, shut down any public media presence and future writing aspirations, and resolved to build my career at Apple for years to come.”

Write to Tim Higgins at Tim.Higgins@WSJ.com

Copyright ©2020 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 87990cbe856818d5eddac44c7b1cdeb8

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