Eugene Arreola and Miguel Sanchez brought the suit in Los Angeles Superior Court, seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
A representative for the 54-year-old “Pirates of the Caribbean” star could not be immediately reached for comment.
The suit states that Arreola and Sanchez worked for Depp for years through Premier Group International, but that in 2016 the company was dissolved and they were hired as part of Depp’s in-house security team.
Arreolo is a retired Los Angeles police detective and Sanchez is a 20-year private security services veteran who has worked with other celebrities who accompanied and protected Depp’s mother and sister “during their most difficult times,” according to the complaint.
In early 2016, Arreola and Sanchez “began to notice a stark change in Depp and the atmosphere on his Hollywood Hills compound,” according to their suit, which says the actor made “sudden and drastic changes to his staff and management staff, “causing a significant financial crunch for everyone surrounding Depp, except for Depp himself.”
In August of that year, Depp’s former wife, actress Amber Heard, received a $7 million settlement in their divorce case, several months after obtaining a temporary restraining order on claims that he abused her throughout their relationship.
Both defenants say they were often used as drivers to take Depp and his family wherever they beckoned. Some of the vehicles “contained illegal substances, open containers and minors,” the suit alleges.
Arreola was never paid overtime or given meal and rest breaks, even though he worked 12-hour shifts from May 2016 until January 2018, the suit alleges. Sanchez also alleges he was not paid overtime from May 2016 to April 2018 despite also working 12-hour days.
Both plaintiffs often were forced “to protect Depp from himself,” including once having to alert the actor to “illegal substances visible on his face and person” during an outing at a nightclub, the suit states.
The pair also claim they were exposed to unsafe conditions, including when their supervisor, Leonard Damian, shot himself in a leg while playing with a small gun in a control room on Depp’s property.
“Although stunned to find himself in such an unsafe and life-threatening situation at work, Sanchez had no choice but to rush Damian to the hospital …,” according to the suit.
Arreola says his work hours were reduced when he complained about not being paid overtime or given rest breaks. When Sanchez took time off to take his ailing mother to a doctor’s appointment, Damian took him off the schedule for several days, according to the lawsuit.
Both men were forced to quit because of the “dangerous and toxic work environment,” even though they “enjoyed many of the people they worked with and had no ill will toward Johnny Depp,” the suit states.
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