RadiumOne fires CEO after domestic abuse conviction

Online ad network's board dismisses Gurbaksh Chahal after the company's founder pleaded guilty to misdemeanor battery charges related to the beating of his girlfriend.

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Gurbaksh Chahal. Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Fox

The embattled CEO of RadiumOne has been fired by the board of the online ad network after his conviction on battery and domestic violence charges, the company announced Sunday.

Gurbaksh Chahal, the company's founder and chairman, was fired Saturday night, according to Recode, which was first to announce the termination. Bill Lonergan, the company's chief operating officer, will take over as CEO, the San Francisco-based company said in a statement.

The company was under intense pressure to act after Chahal pleaded guilty earlier this month to two misdemeanor battery charges related to the beating of his girlfriend last August that was captured on video. Chahal, 31, had faced 47 felony counts related to the incident, in which he allegedly beat and kicked his girlfriend 117 times in a 30-minute attack at his San Francisco home.

Chahal was put on three years probation as part of a plea deal after video of the incident was ruled inadmissible because it was improperly seized by police. He was also sentenced to community service and instructed to enroll in a domestic violence education program.

In a blog post Sunday, Chahal vehemently denied the charges against him, blaming the police and media for creating an "overblown drama." Chahal said he "lost [his] temper" after discovering that his "girlfriend was having unprotected sex for money with other people."

"I recognize that my temper got the better of me, and I will regret that for the rest of my life," Chahal wrote. "But there is a difference between temper and domestic violence, and the truth of what actually happened is no where close to what the police claimed nor anywhere near what the online chatter and pundits are now making it out to be."

Chahal, who founded RadiumOne in 2009, told the San Francisco Chronicle recently that he hoped to take the company public within 12 months. RadiumOne is Chahal's third startup; he sold ClickAgents.com to ValueClick in 2000 for $20 million and BlueLithium to Yahoo in 2007 for $300 million.

 

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