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Jason Bateman’s Wife Accuses Hotelier André Balazs of Groping Her

Jason Bateman’s wife Amanda Anka is among those accusing famous hotelier André Balazs of sexual misconduct in a New York Times report published Thursday.

Through their mutual representative, Bateman and Anka confirmed that Balazs, who owns celebrity hotspots like the Standard, the Mercer in London and Chateau Marmont in West Hollywood, Calif, groped Anka’s crotch in Nov. 2014.

The couple were allegedly celebrating the release of Bateman’s film Horrible Bosses 2 at Balazs’s hotel, the Chiltern Firehouse in London, with the hotelier and some of their costars, including Jennifer Aniston, Jason Sudeikis and Charlie Day.

According to the Times, Balazs insisted the group visit an upstairs room only accessible by a firehouse-style ladder in order to see a better view of the city. Anka, who was wearing a leather dress, was hesitant about climbing the stairs, but Balazs allegedly insisted. Once on the ladder, he allegedly reached his hand up her dress and groped her crotch.

Day’s wife, Mary Elizabeth Ellis, told the Times, “I witnessed behavior by André Balazs that was inappropriate and offensive.”

Anka allegedly told the group what had happened, causing Bateman and his colleagues to become “visibly upset,” the Times reports. Back downstairs, Bateman allegedly spit his gum in Balazs face before leaving the hotel quickly with his wife.

“On behalf of Jason Bateman and Amanda Anka, we can confirm that the account of André Balazs’s outrageous and vile behavior on that night in London is factual,” Bateman and Anka’s publicist said in a statement to the outlet. “His actions were dealt with at the time.”

Balazs, who has dated celebrities like Uma Thurman and Chelsea Handler, has been accused of sexual misconduct by several women since Harvey Weinstein’s alleged bad behavior has surfaced, according to the Times.

A former employee named Sarah, who worked at the Chateau Marmont in the early 1990s, told the Times that her former boss pinned her against a wall, covered her mouth and “pushed his fingers in her vagina” at a club after the two had dinner together.

“I just froze,” she said. Another former employee said that Balazs pinned her in an elevator and tried to kiss her, but she was able to escape.

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Elodie Trouche, one of Balazs’s personal assistants for two years beginning in 2011, said she did not witness inappropriate behavior. “He was professional and polite,” she said. “It was about doing the job.”

But a 26-year-old female media executive also said Balazs touched her without her consent. The woman said that the hotelier, whom she did not know well, grabbed her crotch at a party. “I was humiliated,” she said.

The woman told her roommate about the alleged incident, according to the Times, but regrets not saying anything in the moment.


PEOPLE.com

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