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Le Cirque Sued by Former Employees for Sexual Harassment

Employees at the ritzy French restaurant claim they were being "pimped out"

Le Cirque

French restaurant Le Cirque is being accused of sexual harassment by two former employees who say that management tried to "pimp them out," reports the NY Post. In a civil suit filed against the upscale restaurant, former host Matilda Nikesahani and former bartender Natella Salamone claim that they were sexually harassed by Le Cirque's general manager Alessandro Giardiello and owner Marco Maccioni.

According to the Post, the suit alleges that the manager repeatedly asked Nikesahani to go out for drinks. The suit also claims that he pressured her to go on a date with a regular guest of the restaurant who offered to "help her financially if she dated him." Meanwhile, Salamone claims she often heard the manager discuss Nikesahani's figure in detail to guests.

The owner also participated in the harassment, the suit says. Maccioni sent Salamone a photo of himself on the beach in Italy and often said to customers "Isn't she so beautiful." Both of Nikesahani and Salamone, who say they were two of five women who worked at the restaurant, quit last week after declining a $10,000 settlement.

Notorious labor attorney and the restaurant industry’s favorite lawyer Maimon Kirschenbaum is representing the two women. Kirschenbaum previously led the charge in a tipping lawsuit filed against Le Cirque in 2014, as well as a 2009 suit filed by the restaurant’s catering staff.