Dov Charney Sues American Apparel for $20M

     LOS ANGELES (CN) – Dov Charney is busy in court, adding to last week’s lawsuit against an investment firm with a $20 million defamation claim against the clothing retailer he founded, American Apparel.
     Charney, 46, sued investment firm Standard General for $30 million last Thursday in Superior Court, claiming he was fired from American Apparel’s board because of a bogus investigation and false claims.
     He made similar allegations in the same court Tuesday against American Apparel and its Chairwoman Colleen Brown.
     American Apparel spokeswoman Arielle Patrick said Charney’s claims would fail.
     “These meritless claims serve as public relations opportunities now, but they will each fail the test when put before a judge,” Patrick wrote in an email.
     Charney has been the subject of highly publicized claims that he misused corporate assets, abused his executive position and sexually harassed employees. The company suspended him in June 2014 and six months later pushed him off the board.
     His May 12 lawsuit takes aim at a letter Brown wrote to American Apparel’s employees in April.
     Brown wrote that the board had cause to fire him, and that he had agreed to step down if an independent investigation found his conduct unacceptable, Charney says in the complaint. He also claims that Brown wrote, falsely, that the company was pushed to the brink of “financial ruin” under his leadership.
     “Defendants have engaged in an ugly campaign to defame and attack Charney’s personal and professional reputation and character in some of the most despicable and demeaning ways possible,” the 23-page complaint states.
     Charney claims that Brown and the retailer obtained his email messages from the company’s server, including his “highly personal and private photographs and videos” and leaked them to the press to help quash his legal claims against Standard General and American Apparel.
     The Canadian businessman wants a minimum of $10 million in general and compensatory damages, and $10 million in punitive damages.
     He is represented by Keith Fink and Olaf Muller with Fink & Steinberg.

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