Wednesday, March 9, 2011

American Apparel founder hit with $250 million sexual assault claim

American Apparel founder hit with $250 million sexual assault claim

The founder of American Apparel has been accused of making a staff member his sex slave.

The founder of struggling clothing chain American Apparel, Dov Charney, has been accused of holding a young staff member captive and forcing her to perform sex acts.

A law suit for a reported US$250 million has been filed in Brooklyn Supreme Court and alleges that Charney turned a teenage employee into his sex slave and forced her to send him nude pictures and text messages.

The law suit claims that the girl was 17 when she was hired as a sales assistant at American Apparel in August 2007.

It is alleged that Charney visited the retail store where she worked, obtained her contact information and started repeatedly calling her.

It describes how on the day she turned 18, Charney demanded the woman visit him at his Manhattan apartment, answered the door in his underpants, dragged her inside and forced her to her knees so she could pleasure him.

According to the lawsuit, she was then allegedly forced to stay in the apartment for several hours while he forced her to perform additional sexual acts.

American Apparel deny all claims and say the former staffer's lawyers are trying to 'extort' money from the company.

American Apparel said in a statement: "Upon her resignation, [the employee] acknowledged in writing that she had no pending claims against the company and signed a severance agreement which included a full release of claims and an agreement to submit any future claims to confidential binding arbitration."

"The company intends to file a formal complaint with the NY state bar seeking disciplinary action against [the employee's] lawyers who we believe are engaged in an illegal conspiracy to extort money from American Apparel."
It's not the first time controversy has surrounded Charney. Ex-employees have previously accused him of conducting business meetings in the nude.