A billionaire hologram producer who took the stand Wednesday in the third sexual harassment case against him to reach trial in less than six months lashed out at the attorneys for the woman suing him, prompting one of those lawyers to complain to the judge that he was not doing enough to stop such behavior.

Alki David was testifying on his own behalf in trial of plaintiff Lauren Reeves’ Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit when he called Nathan Goldberg and Dolores Leal, members of Gloria Allred’s law firm, “liars” and “extortionists” and promised they would be penniless when he sued them after all the current litigation is completed. Other cases against David are still awaiting trial.

After the jury had been dismissed for the day, Goldberg implored Judge Terry Green to be more firm with David when he attacks him and his colleagues.

“It’s the court’s obligation to protect me from this ranting lunatic,” Goldberg said.

The judge replied that he is doing his best by repeatedly telling David to let his lawyers present their case instead of making outbursts in court. He also said he is reluctant to do anything that could interfere with the ability of the defense to present its theory of the case.

David’s lawyer, Ellyn Garafalo, said her client is frustrated that members of Allred’s firm and that of her daughter, Lisa Bloom, who represents two of David’s accusers, have brought so many cases against him that he believes have no merit.

“This is a guy who has been hammered by a series of lawsuits over a period of time,” Garafalo said.

David referred to Bloom as Allred’s “awful daughter.”

Reeves testified earlier in the trial that she had two stints working as an dependent contractor for David, one in 2015 at FilmOn TV and another in 2016 at Hologram USA. She said she came back the second time to pitch an idea to him because she was interested in working with holograms.

Reeves said David twice put his hands around her throat in the workplace in April 2016, the second time occurring in front of a comedian, Jake Weisman of Comedy Central, with whom she was having a conversation. She said David demanded during the alleged assault that she look into his eyes, and said he was bullied as a child.

On another occasion as the two walked to a nearby grocery store, David told Reeves he was stopping to get supplies for his “rape room,” she alleged. In still another incident, David placed one of his fingers in his mouth, made moaning sounds and uttered a comment that referred to the private parts of her celebrity boyfriend at the time, Reeves testified.

In testimony just before David took the witness stand, Weisman confirmed that the businessman put one hand around Reeves’ throat.

“It was definitely not comedy,” Weisman said. “She seemed horrified and stunned.”

David, who shouted at Weisman from his seat in the audience during the comedian’s testimony, later told jurors that he never fully put his hand around Reeves’ throat. He also said Reeves laughed when it happened.

David, who repeatedly complained that his behavior in the workplace was being taken out of context, said his remark to Reeves about the “rape room” was a joke.

“At least there’s a place to sit down,” he said.

David said Reeves was creating content that was not acceptable to him and that he was not satisfied with her ideas, including one that proposed a roast of President Donald Trump.

“I hired her to make funny, raunchy shows,” he said, promising jurors they would not be bored during the trial.

“It’s going to be very entertaining, ladies and gentlemen,” he said.

In addition to alleging the evidence against him was fabricated, David openly complained about the questions posed to him by Goldberg.

“His task is to infuriate me with nonsense,” David said.

But the judge told David he was only making matters worse with his responses.

“You take the bait each time and run with it,” Green said.

David was behind the hologram technology that brought slain rapper Tupac Shakur to Coachella in 2012 and saw the late Michael Jackson moonwalk at the 2014 Billboard Music Awards.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *