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Ex-Grammy Awards Head Neil Portnow Faces Rape Suit



Neil Portnow, the former head of the Grammy Awards, is now facing legal action as a woman filed a lawsuit accusing him of drugging and raping her in a New York hotel room in 2018.

The suit, filed in New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan, also alleges sexual battery against Portnow and accuses the Recording Academy, the nonprofit group behind the Grammys, of negligence.

While the woman’s identity is not disclosed in the suit, she is described as an instrumentalist from outside the United States who had performed at Carnegie Hall.

The court documents include redacted correspondence from 2018 between her and the academy regarding her complaint.

The lawsuit brings back memories of a tumultuous period in the Grammy Awards’ recent history when Portnow left the institution after making controversial remarks that women in music should ‘step up’ to receive greater recognition in the industry.

His successor, Deborah Dugan, was terminated abruptly after accusing the organisation of various abuses, including covering up the allegation made in the new lawsuit.

Jeffrey R. Anderson, a lawyer for the plaintiff, criticised Portnow, stating that his actions do a disservice to every woman and musician being oppressed in the industry.

The lawsuit not only targets Portnow but also raises questions about the broader culture in the music and entertainment industry concerning issues of abuse.

In response to the lawsuit, a representative of Neil Portnow called the allegations false, attributing them to the plaintiff’s imagination and linking them to Portnow’s refusal to comply with ‘outrageous demands for money and assistance in obtaining a residence visa’.

The Recording Academy issued a statement saying that it continues to believe the claims are without merit and intends to vigorously defend itself in the lawsuit.

News About Nigeria gathered that the lawsuit details the woman’s encounter with Portnow, alleging that she met him at a Recording Academy event in January 2018.

Following the event, Portnow invited her to the Grammys ceremony and later instructed her to come to his hotel room in New York, where the alleged assault took place.