Last week, the Telegraph revealed that two male executives told a lawyer working for Arcadia that they had witnessed Sir Philip as he “slapped” a woman’s bottom on several occasions.
However, their comments did not appear into a final report which is understood to have concluded that the business had not sexually harassment a female executive.
Deborah Cooper, a lawyer working for Arcadia, carried out the investigation.
One witness, a senior finance executive, is understood to have said that although he could not remember a specific meeting where an incident allegedly took place, he had witnessed Sir Philip “slap” the woman’s bottom and threaten to “smack” her on other occasions.
However, it is understood that the final report only stated that the executive could not “recall” a specific meeting in question.
A second witness also appeared to back up the woman’s claims when he told the lawyer that he had seen Sir Philip “slap” the woman’s bottom on the way to a meeting, which made her “distressed” it was later claimed he had retracted his evidence.
Shortly after the initial report was delivered, the female executive is believed to have appealed, amid allegations of a “cover up”.
Ms Cooper later alleged that she was bullied by the businessman during the course of the probe, a court was told during a hearing about the case.
The SRA put out a warning to legal professionals about the misuse of NDAs to cover up potentially criminal behaviour in March after Zelda Perkins, a former assistant to Harvery Weinstein broke her agreement to reveal the details within it.