U.S. financial giant Merrill Lynch dismissed 13 staff members at its Dublin office after they had sent pornographic material through the company email system. This followed the suspension of 20 staffers the previous week following an internal investigation.

A spokesman for Merrill Lynch told The Irish Times that "of the 20, 13 have been terminated, and seven have received written warnings. The seven can return to work on Monday. All have the right to appeal."

Fifteen members of staff have been fired from Merrill Lynch's 600-strong Dublin office in recent times.

A source told The Irish Times that two workers had sent porn emails to a client. This prompted the company to launch an internal inquiry and search through its computer systems and email servers. This led to 20 members of staff being suspended and another ten receiving written warnings and retraining on appropriate email and internet usage.

This incident follows the sacking of 14 staff at the Driver and Vehicle Licencing Agency in Swansea, Wales, over porn emails.