LOS ANGELES - Nobu Malibu restaurant challenges sexual harassment allegations made by a former hostess's lawsuit in a statement this week.
The 23-year-old hostess, identified only as Jane Doe, sued the restaurant in Los Angeles Superior Court on Sept. 13, alleging she and her female colleagues were routinely subjected to sexual assault by customers and managers.
"Because of its close proximity to Hollywood's brightest stars and (due to) Nobu's `please the customer first' mantra, plaintiff and other young female hostesses performing the same role, endure outright sexual advances and abuse for the sake of maintaining Nobu's glamorous reputation and keeping their jobs," the lawsuit states.
PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Another Nobu Malibu hostess files lawsuit, alleges sexual harassment
But in court papers filed Thursday, Nobu attorneys maintain that Doe's claims are either partially or fully barred by the statute of limitations and the plaintiff's "own actions and course of conduct."
On Sept. 18, a woman identified only as Jayne Doe II filed a similar suit, alleging sexual assault and battery, gender discrimination, harassment, retaliation, failure to prevent discrimination and harassment and negligent hiring and supervision.
In Jayne Doe II's complain, she said that she "treasures her employment at Nobu, not only for her steady salary, but also for the reputation that comes with an otherwise desirable job that affords plaintiff work flexibility." However, Doe II contends that Nobu requires its young hostesses to greet guests in scantily clad black uniforms while not protecting them from "overt sexual harassment" from both patrons and supervisors.
The Nobu restaurants were founded by chef Nobu Matsuhisa, actor Robert De Niro and producer Meir Teper.