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A jury in Manhattan found Robert De Niro’s production company guilty of discrimination and retaliation against Graham Chase Robinson, who used to work for the actor. The two-week trial ended in a New York City courtroom.
Robinson’s case went to civil court, and the jury said that De Niro’s company, Canal Productions, had to pay her $1.2 million in damages. This is a little more than $633,000 for each charge of discrimination and retaliation.
The verdict ends a two-week trial and a four-year battle between De Niro and Robinson, who said the actor kept making sexy comments and degrading requests. She said that De Niro kept giving her low-level tasks unrelated to her job.
Many countercharges were brought against Robinson, but she was found not guilty. These included using company money to buy personal items, stealing company frequent flyer miles, and watching too much Netflix during work time.
For his part, De Niro was not found guilty in the case. According to reporters, De Niro’s lawyer, Rich Schoenstein, who was also representing De Niro’s company, Canal Productions, said he was “very happy [the jury] separated Bob from this.” He later added, “It’s a great victory for Mr. De Niro.” He was cleared.”
He said that De Niro was a “boss from hell.” She said De Niro asked her to scratch his back and talked on the phone with her while he was going to the bathroom. She also said that De Niro gave her low-level jobs and that she wasn’t paid enough because she was a woman.
There was a verdict, but the 80-year-old acting legend wasn’t in court for most of the trial. He did take the stand last month and snapped, “This is all nonsense!” when Robinson said that his requests for Robinson to scratch his back were sexual. “They were never rude about it,” De Niro said.
De Niro said in court that he called Robinson a “f-king spoiled brat” when she forgot to wake him up for an important meeting, but he denied that he had ever been abusive.
“The jury saw what Ms. Robinson saw and completely vindicated her,” said her attorney, Brent Hannafan. “We’re thrilled with the verdict. Ms. Robinson is thrilled with the verdict. She feels vindicated,” he added.
A jury has awarded $1.2 million to Robert De Niro’s former assistant in gender discrimination lawsuit. https://t.co/Ow46T959ns
— NBC 7 San Diego (@nbcsandiego) November 9, 2023
De Niro testified in a trial last month regarding the lawsuit that his former personal assistant had filed, alleging that the actor was a bad boss.
De Niro, who seemed grumpy at times, held back from exploding when his interactions with her were broken down. He finally let out a scream: “This is all nonsense!”
The actor, who won two Oscars and is known for roles in hit movies like “The Deer Hunter” and “Raging Bull,” was the first witness in a trial that started because of lawsuits about Graham Chase Robinson’s job. Robinson worked for De Niro from 2008 to 2019 and was his vice production and finance vice president. When she quit, she was paid $300,000 a year.
She has been decorating De Niro’s Christmas tree and taking him to the hospital when he falls downstairs for years.
Now she is suing him for $12 million, saying that he has caused her a lot of emotional harm and hurt her reputation.
Robinson said he wouldn’t help her get another job when she quit in 2019 because she kept fighting with his girlfriend.