Boxing legend Oscar De La Hoya has been charged with sexual assault in a civil lawsuit filed against him and his tequila brand Casa Mexico in Los Angeles on Wednesday, according to court documents obtained by ESPN.
A woman who is a former employee of Casa Mexico alleges in the filing that De La Hoya molested and sexually assaulted her on two separate occasions. The lawsuit is a counterclaim filed in Los Angeles Superior Court against Casa Mexico, company directors Michael Gooch and Robert Crossan, DV Capital Partners and De La Hoya.
“As a survivor of this abuse, she wants others to know that this behavior is unacceptable — and it doesn’t matter who you are,” the woman’s attorney, Sylvia Torres-Guillen, said in a statement. “We will seek justice for them.”
According to the filing, Casa Mexico organized a corporate event in Mexico in March 2020 to visit the brand’s distillery. The former employee claims that she woke up the first night there when De La Hoya knocked on her hotel room door. Opening the door, she said she saw De La Hoya with his pants down around his ankles. She claims he broke into her room and climbed into her bed. According to the suit, the woman pushed him out of her bed and took him back to his room.
When De La Hoya failed to show up for a scheduled meeting to tour the distillery the next morning, the woman claims she went into his room to wake him, claiming that De La Hoya pulled her into his bed and her sexually abused.
Shortly after returning to Los Angeles after the trip, the woman said she attended a company party at a restaurant, where some people ended up at De La Hoya’s home afterwards. When De La Hoya was alone with the woman, she claims that he “disclosed and recovered a sexual object from a stored collection at his home,” according to the filing. According to the woman, De La Hoya “forced the sexual object into her body.”
The woman says she told Casa Mexico executives but they did nothing to discipline De La Hoya. She says, according to the complaint, that she fears retaliation from the company if she speaks out about the alleged abuse.
ESPN does not release the names of those who say they have been victims of sexual violence. The Los Angeles Times first reported news of the lawsuit.
De La Hoya and television personality Mario Lopez are listed as partners of Casa Mexico on the company’s website. De La Hoya denied the lawsuit allegations in a statement released to the Times on Wednesday.
“With the 24-hour news cycle we all find ourselves in, most often malicious and unjust allegations are interpreted as truth with no evidence to back up their false claims,” De La Hoya said in a statement. “I am confident that my legal team will resolve this matter and prove my innocence.”
In addition to allegations of sexual harassment and sexual violence, the lawsuit alleges gender discrimination, wrongful termination, and negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Casa Mexico sued the woman and company founder Eric Gerardo Leyva-Buccio in December for breach of fiduciary duty, a case that is pending.
De La Hoya, 49, is a former six-division champion and Olympic gold medalist. He was one of the most popular boxers of his generation. De La Hoya, an LA native and Mexican, retired after a loss to Manny Pacquiao in 2008. He was due to return to the ring last year but withdrew after falling ill with COVID-19. He has since said he will not be making a comeback.
https://www.espn.com/boxing/story/_/id/33775219/oscar-de-la-hoya-accused-sexually-assaulting-woman-twice-2020 Oscar De La Hoya is accused of sexually abusing a woman twice in 2020