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Sexual harassment and assault

Five women have filed lawsuits against Monster Energy alleging sexual discrimination and abuse by executives

One plaintiff claims an executive kept his job after allegedly attempting to strangle her

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 24 January, 2018, 2:11pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 24 January, 2018, 2:13pm

By Kate Taylor

Monster Energy is in hot water after allegations of sexist and abusive behaviour by executives.

The Coca-Cola-backed beverage company has been hit with five lawsuits involving the mistreatment of women, HuffPost reports.

In one case, makeup artist Sara Rabuse, who had worked with Monster, claims she was strangled by her then-boyfriend, an executive at the company. The ex-boyfriend, Brent Hamilton, was arrested on charges of assault in 2016 after an argument.

Hamilton is still the head of music marketing at Monster Energy. Monster told HuffPost that there was nothing to suggest “he has a violent or abusive history or that he and his ex-girlfriend would have gotten into a private domestic dispute as alleged.”

In another lawsuit, region manager Page Zeringue claims she faced sexual discrimination after she began dating a more senior executive, John Kenneally.

After beginning their relationship, Zeringue was promoted twice by her boss, Kenneally. But later Zeringue claimed Kenneally threatened to fire her if she broke up with him, according to the report.

Zeringue told HuffPost that when she brought up issues with HR, she received a write-up filled with “fabricated, illegitimate, vague complaints and issues.”

Zeringue was fired two weeks later. Kenneally was put on paid leave after HuffPost reached out for its article, though Monster said that Zeringue’s departure was unrelated to the couple’s “consensual relationship.”

Monster said in a statement to HuffPost that the lawsuits did not reflect a sexist culture at the company, and that the cases “are diverse, unrelated and do not remotely suggest a systemic environment of harassment or discrimination.”

Coca-Cola, which has a 18.1 per cent stake in Monster, denied knowledge of the lawsuits in a statement to HuffPost.

The company did not immediately responded to Business Insider’s request for comment.

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Read the original article at Business Insider