A former IBM employee who complained of being sexually harassed by his female boss was sacked due to his poor work performance, a company executive told a court yesterday. Christopher Gamlin told the District Court that the sacking of Ray Chen, 31, was not connected with his allegations of sexual harassment. Mr Gamlin said the first time he was made aware of the allegations was when Mr Chen was sacked on December 18, 1998. Mr Chen is suing Tamara Rus, 29, a project manager, for alleged sexual harassment and IBM China/Hong Kong, alleging it ignored his complaints and 'abruptly terminated' his contract. He claimed harassment took place while he was working as a senior information technology specialist between August and December 1998. Mr Gamlin said he was told by Mr Chen's superior that his work performance was unsatisfactory. Mr Gamlin confirmed that performance evaluations were twice conducted on Mr Chen to ensure he was improving at work. 'Mr Chen's style was one which was of the type we could certainly make use of as a leader of the future in IBM,' he said. 'He was quite confident when talking to senior management and had no hesitation whatsoever, but his manner needed to be curbed.' Mr Gamlin also said he was told that Mr Chen argued with his IBM colleagues. He said he was also shown e-mail exchanges between Mr Chen and Ms Rus, the content of which he regarded as 'mildly flirtatious'. The hearing continues before Judge Maggie Poon Man-kay on Monday.