A Silicon Valley businessman is being sued for $52 million by an exotic dancer who claims he held her as a sex slave for 13 years, while he married three different women and had a number of children.
The lawsuit was filed by Amber Laurel Baptiste in the California Superior Court in San Mateo over an alleged breach of contract with Michael Gougen, a longtime partner at Sequoia Capital, a legendary venture-capital firm in the US.
Mr Gougen parted from the company last week following the publication of the case in which Ms Baptiste claims she was "sexually, physically and emotionally for over 13 years".
According to the lawsuit, Mr Goguen signed a contract to pay Ms Baptiste $52 million as compensation. But after paying her just $10 million, Mr Goguen refused to honour the rest of his agreement, according to the lawsuit.
In a statement sent by his law firm, Mr Goguen said the matter was purely personal, with no connection to Sequoia Capital, adding he would file a cross complaint on Monday.
Ms Baptiste claims she was taken to the US from Canada by human traffickers at the age of 15, and claims to have endured “countless hours of forced sodomy” from the tech titan, the New York Post reports.
Mr Goguen does not deny he had a sexual relationship with the former stripper but described her as a "woman scorned" who was jealous of his wife and wants a "pay day".
The venture capitalist has filed a countersuit in which he has provided text and emails from Ms Baptiste where she refers to him as “Prince Charming" and “the sweetest man in the world”.
The Post reports that they include descriptions of the "amazing sex" they had together and graphic photos of BMs aptiste posing in underwear.
We understand the allegations about Michael Goguen are unproven and unrelated to Sequoia. Still, we decided his departure was appropriate.
— Sequoia Capital (@sequoia) March 12, 2016
According to his LinkedIn page, Mr Goguen has been leading Sequoia's investments in about a dozen companies.
Last week he said in a statement the departure would allow him to focus on clearing his name after a relationship ended badly.
Sequoia, one of the earliest US venture capital firms, and Mr Goguen said that the lawsuit had no relation to the firm.
"We understand that these allegations of serious improprieties are unproven and unrelated to Sequoia," a Sequoia spokesman said in a emailed statement.
"Nevertheless, we came to the decision that Mike's departure was the appropriate course of action."x
Newsbreak – March 17