Jian Ghomeshi, was released on bail today following an appearance in a Toronto court. He is to face five criminal charges and is accused of sexual assault and choking.

 

Ghomeshi has been accused by nine different women of various levels of sexual assault. it has been reported that Ghomeshi used his connections through his CBC Radio One show called Q which he hosted from 2007-2014, as well as social media outlets like Facebook, Twitter, and even his studio audience, to contact and procure attractive women. He allegedly would lure them back to his apartment and force them into degrading sexual acts while he often beat them into submission. He even repeatedly harassed the women he worked with.

An unidentified woman who worked with Ghomeshi in 2007 had heard initial rumors about his proclivities even then. However, she needed the job, and ignored the rumors until things became uncomfortable. Allegedly, Ghomeshi began harassing and grabbing her sexually, in a way that was not appropriate or consensual. When she went to Q‘s Executive Producer, she claims she was told that “He’s never going to change, you’re a malleable person, let’s talk about how you can make this a less toxic work environment for you…No one was going to talk to Jian, he was too big. The show was a f—-ing juggernaut at that point. His face and name were inextricably linked with the brand of Q.”

It has been alleged that CBC had known for quite some time about Ghomeshi’s inappropriate behavior but did nothing because he was “too big to fail,” and only took action on October 23, after Ghomeshi showed them graphically violent and sexual videos, texts and pictures on a phone owned by the company.

Ghomeshi has stated that he enjoys rough sex but that the encounters in question were entirely consensual. “We will address these allegations fully and directly in a courtroom. It is not my practice to litigate my cases in the media,” Marie Henein, Ghomeshi’s lawyer said today, before revealing they will not engage the media again until after the trial.

Meanwhile, two of his accusers have revealed themselves. They are Reva Seth, a famous Canadian author and lawyer, and Lucy DeCoutere, a former actress known for playing Lucy in The Trailer Park Boys and who is now a Captain in the Royal Canadian Air Force. They both claim similar stories of abuse at Ghomeshi’s hands. DeCoutere was the first to come forward publicly, and was one of the first two speak to police about Ghomeshi’s actions. DeCoutere alleges that in 2003 Ghomeshi assaulted her in his apartment after a date. She claims that Ghomeshi suddenly choked her to the point where she could not breathe and struck her several times in the face until she couldn’t see straight.

Ghomeshi was released today on $100,000 bail and will be seeing trial for the alleged abuse. DeCoutere published a statement shortly thereafter. “The past month has seen a major shift in the conversation about violence against women. It has been an overwhelming and painful time for many people, including myself, but also very inspiring. I hope that victims’ voices continue to be heard and that this is the start of a change that is so desperately needed.”

Ghomeshi has plead not guilty.

 

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