A woman on Thursday accused British comedian, actor and social influencer Russell Brand of exposing himself to her in 2008, the latest in a.
The woman told CBS News partner network BBC News she was working in the same building as the BBC in Los Angeles when the incident occurred, and that Brand went on to laugh about it moments later on his radio show.
She didn’t file a complaint but BBC management was told about the incident in 2019, though no formal action was taken.
The BBC says Brand hasn’t commented yet on her allegation.
“I feel ashamed, but more so, I wonder had something been done, perhaps there would have been fewer women he would have done horrible things to, which we’re reading about in the papers now,” she told the broadcaster.
Prior claims against Brand
A joint investigation by British newspapers The Times and Sunday Times and by Britain’s Channel 4 television published and aired Saturdayby Brand.
Brand, 48, strongly denied those allegations, stemming from incidents said to have taken place between 2006 and 2013. He maintained that his relationships have always been “consensual,” even during a period when he admitted being “very, very promiscuous.”
The Times and Sunday Times on Monday said more women had come forward to make claims about his behavior in the early 2000s, without giving further details.
In a short statement on Monday, London’s Metropolitan Police said, “On Sunday September 17, the Met received a report of a sexual assault which was alleged to have taken place in Soho in central London in 2003,” adding that police were “in contact with the woman and will be providing her with support.”
The revelations come amid criticism of how sexual assault cases are handled in the criminal justice system in the U.K., as well as how media organizations have handled similar accusations of inappropriate behavior by big-name stars. One of the organizations hit hardest by such allegations, after a serving officer was convicted of the 2021 rape and murder of a young woman in London.
Reactions to the claims, on multiple fronts
Brand’s former employers the BBC and Channel 4, as well as a production company, have launched their own investigations into the claims.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s official spokesman called the latest allegation “very serious and concerning,” adding that he’d “been clear there should never be any space for harassment, regardless of where it is found.”
Brand’s publisher Bluebird announced that “all future publishing” with the comedian had been put on hold, and YouTube has blocked Brand’s ability to make money from his content on the platform.
Brand became known internationally as the former husband of pop star Katy Perry after forging a career as a stand-up comedian, with near-the-knuckle routines, often about drugs and sex.
He presented on television reality shows and played rock star Aldous Snow in the 2008 film “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” and its 2010 sequel “Get Him to the Greek.”
In recent years, he’s become a prominent conspiracy theorist, using his YouTube channel to questionto his nearly seven million followers. He’s argued that the global pandemic was a cover-up by the global elite to enforce radical social change.