Comedian, actor, former television host, now internet personality Russel Brand was accused of rape and sexual assault on Saturday night by four women.
Brand, known for his “boundary pushing” humor, has accumulated a laundry list of controversial scandals over the years.
British police said on Monday that they received word of the allegations after three media outlets published the claims of the four women. According to The New York Times, the investigation was done by The Sunday Times, The Times of London newspapers, and Channel 4 Dispatches, a television program that aired a documentary about the allegations on Saturday while Brand was performing in a London Venue.
London’s Metropolitan Police force said “officers are in contact with the woman and will be providing her with support,” and urged “anyone who believes they may have been a victim of a sexual offense, no matter how long ago it was, to contact us.”
The allegations reported were said to have occurred between 2006 and 2013 when Brand was in the spotlight, with a growing presence in the U.S. Brand was formerly married to pop-star Katy Perry between 2010 and 2012.
Though Brand has denied all allegations made against him, promoters have postponed the remaining dates of his live shows.
His management agency, Tavistock Wood, has dropped Brand as a client after claiming they were “horribly misled” by him. They are left to question whether Brand’s inappropriate behavior got swept under the rug because of his status.
One women accused Brand of raping her in his home in Los Angeles in 2012. The victim has provided medical records that conformed she had received treatment at a rape crisis center, taking into account Britain’s claiment-friendly libel laws that put the pressure of presenting evidence on those reporting allegations such as these.
Another woman claims that when she was 16 Brand forced her to perform oral sex on him even after she tried pushing him away. Out of the four women, three were not identified in the reports
Brand posted a video on social media stating that his relationships have always been consensual, but did not address the specifics of the allegations. Brand also stated that there were “witnesses whose evidence directly contradicts the narratives” presented by the media outlets, according to The New York Times.
Brand has not recently been at the center of mainstream media, but has been gaining a new following through his YouTube channel where he posts content relating to wellness, COVID-19 conspiracies, vaccine misinformation, and interviews with controversial public figures like Tucker Carlson, Joe Rogan, Candance Owens, and Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida.
YouTube has suspended monetization on Brand’s channel after the allegations were broadcasted. “If a creator’s off-platform behavior harms our users, employees or ecosystem, we take action to protect the community,” stated the online platform. BBC has also taken some of his shows off of their streaming services.
Channel 4 and BBC have both said in statements that they are investigating the allegations made against Brand from the time periods he had worked at the companies.
Supporters of Brand questioned why the allegations were being made years after the alleged incidents, and the women responded by saying they only felt ready to tell their stories after being approached by reporters, according to the Associated Press.
Some speculate that it has to do with Brand’s “newfound prominence as an online wellness influencer”, trying to damage his already questionable reputation.
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