A man identified in a woman’s lawsuit as a financial adviser for Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC, with Katy Perry among his clients, is being sued by a woman who alleges he hired her as his administrative assistant to lure her into a sexual relationship and to use her good looks to attract clients.
Lorena Alcantara’s Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit names as defendants both the brokerage house and money counselor Michael Ladge. Alcantara alleges sexual harassment and failure to prevent sexual harassment.
The complaint, filed Thursday, seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
A Morgan Stanley representative could not be immediately reached.
The suit states that Alcantara was working at a gym when she met Ladge, who was a customer.
“In or around late summer 2015, Ladge recruited Alcantara to accompany him and one of his clients, pop star Katy Perry, to Brazil,” the suit states. “Ladge wanted Alcantara to help translate and she took the trip and did so.”
Ladge later hired Alcantara as an administrative assistant despite her lack of experience in the area and her limited knowledge of English, the suit states.
“Ladge’s real purpose in hiring Alcantara, a beautiful young woman in her mid-20s at the time, was to try to use his power with Alcantara … to attract clients and to pursue a sexual relationship with her,” the suit alleges.
Ladge’s employee group within Morgan Stanley mainly employed “younger, attractive women” and Ladge would “openly say that he would not hire men,” the suit states.
Nearly every day, Ladge showed Alcantara photos of women with whom he “was either having sex with, dating, and/or paying to have sex with or date,” the suit states.
Ladge said it was proper to pay women to have sex with him “because that’s essentially what men do in relationships,” the suit states.
When Alcantara sought three months off beginning in November 2016 because of a broken ankle, Ladge berated her for being absent and told her to return right away, the suit states.
Alcantara returned in three days despite being in “tremendous pain,” according to her suit.
“He would tell her that she owes him because he hired her despite objections from management about her lack of English skills,” according to Alcantara’s complaint.
Alcantara is married to a woman, but Ladge told an associate that “he had heard that Alcantara had sexual relations with a man, too,” the suit states.
Ladge also was prejudiced against Alcantara because of her ethnicity and told her when he was upset that she was like “Tarzan,” the suit states.
When Alcantara eventually quit because of the alleged mistreatment by Ladge, he told her that she owed him for the help he gave her and that she should lie about why she was departing, the suit states.
–City News Service
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