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Minyard Food Stores Inc. won a $2.3 million judgment yesterday when a Dallas court concluded that the company’s former president and CEO, Ronald Johnson, was guilty of fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and breach of contract.
According to published reports, Johnson was fired from Coppell, Texas-based Minyard in June 2006 for violating the company’s code of business ethics. Johnson sued Minyard for failure to pay $600,000 in severance he said he was owed under his employment contract.
The grocer countersued, claiming that during his 18-month tenure, Johnson stole from the company and violated the its code of ethics in his relations with vendors. Fort Worth, Texas-based Renegade Swish, LLC, which purchased Minyard from the founding family, hired Johnson in 2004 to run what was then a 67-store supermarket chain. The company now operates 20 stores, 14 pharmacies and eight fuel stations.