Boy, oh boy. The list of alleged sexual offenders in fashion and Hollywood is growing by the day. Paul Marciano, co-founder of denim brand Guess, has resigned in the wake of sexual assault probes.
Earlier this year, sexual abuse allegations were brought against the jean mogul by a number of unnamed witnesses, but, most notably by model Kate Upton. Upton wrote in an Instagram post in January that Marciano “shouldn’t be allowed to use his power in the industry to sexually and emotionally harass women #metoo.”
Upton got her wish.
In a note from Guess to it’s shareholders and investors, the brand didn’t shy away from holding Marciano accountable for his actions.
“Mr. Marciano exercised poor judgment in his communications with models and photographers and in placing himself in situations in which plausible allegations of improper conduct could, and did, arise,” the document reads.
In an effort to avoid going to court and admitting fault for these actions, the brand and Marciano “entered into non-confidential settlement agreements resolving the claims of five individuals.”
The total settlement awarded to the victims was $500,000, Upton being one of them. Upton is vindicated for the crimes that Marciano committed against her in 2010. Then 18-year-old Upton claimed that Marciano grabbed her breast, and made several unwanted sexual advances towards her at the time.
“After I pushed him away, he said, ‘I’m making sure they’re real,'” Upton told Time in an exclusive interview on the incidents.
Marciano will step back from his executive chairman position. He will still remain on the board of directors until his contract expires in 2019. Victor Herrero, currently Guess CEO and Director, will succeed Marciano.
Guess has been through a rough patch over the last five years or so, with the decline of denim and rise of sportswear. It seems this is the nail in the coffin for the disgraced mogul.