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High End Fashion Designer Sued for Sexual Harassment

Emanuel Shirazi

Elie Tahari, a popular fashion designer whose clothes are a staple at high end retailers such as Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, and Saks Fifth Avenue, is being sued by a former consultant for sexual harassment. The fashion consultant, Marcy Castelgrande, worked for the designer for 5 years before being laid off and is currently seeking $12 million in damages.

Castelgrande is alleging that Tahari groped her private parts while she was modeling a skirt in front of a crowd of people, including her colleagues and supervisors. When Castelgrande, who was embarrassed and shocked by the incident, told Tahari to stop touching her, he yelled for her to leave. Castelgrande immediately filed a sexual harassment complaint with HR and was fired a mere two hours later. Tahari was overheard saying that he cannot work with Castelgrande because she was too sensitive and that since he had past lawsuits he could not deal with another one. Well firing someone two hours after their complaining of sexual harassment is inviting a lawsuit that includes retaliation and wrongful termination as well.

The lawsuit also alleges that Tahari created a “sexually charged environment” at work months prior to the skirt incident.

This is Tahari’s second lawsuit this year. The first suit was filed in April by fashion designer and former business partner, Catherine Malandrino. She is suing him for ruining her clothing line and cutting her out of a $7 million sale.

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