July 18, 2005 09:00 ET

LBC&C Wins Acquittal for Jordache Enterprises and Co-Owner Ralph Nakash in Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

GARDEN CITY, NY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- July 18, 2005 -- L'Abatte, Balkan, Colavita & Contini (LBC&C) today announced that it has secured a victory for its client Jordache Enterprises and co-owner Ralph Nakash in a New York State Supreme Court sexual harassment trial, alleging harassment and wrongful termination by employee Jennifer LaForest.

Jordache, which catapulted to fame in the late 1970s as a leader in the designer-label category, is today a dealer in the design, marketing and distribution of high quality denim-based apparel. Jennifer LaForest, a former sales executive for the Jordache Gasoline clothing line, claimed Nakash subjected her to hostile sexual conduct, during her 3 1/2 years of employment there.

The LBC&C defense team, led by Mercedes Colwin, showed that although LaForest claimed that these sexual misconduct incidents had occurred hundreds of times in full view of the office, no one could corroborate that any of these incidents had taken place, not even the people who sat immediately adjacent to her. In the trial, it was revealed that LaForest was offered a job by a competitor for a 60 to 100 percent increase in her salary nine months prior to her termination, but she stayed for considerable less sum of money. Through the evidence presented by Colwin, the jury was convinced that had LaForest really been working in a hostile environment, she would not have chosen to stay at Jordache. After the close of the case, the jury deliberated for only one hour before returning a verdict in favor of Jordache and Nakash.

According to Colwin, "The increasing number of sexual harassment cases demonstrates the vulnerability corporations face today. The very nature of these claims, which are primarily based upon the credibility of the parties involved, heightens the risk -- especially when dealing with well-known companies. The first line of defense for any of these claims is to have a well-written policy handbook and sensitivity training for employees, with a particular emphasis on supervisors."

About Jordache

The Jordache Apparel Group's brand names, which include Jordache, Gasoline, Airport, Maurice Sasson, KIKIT, Jordache Vintage and US Polo Association, among others, comprise one of the world's most widely recognized families of consumer brands.

About LBC&C

L'Abbate, Balkan, Colavita & Contini, LLP, is a full service law firm providing a complete scope of legal counsel to professionals, insurance companies, service businesses, manufacturers, banks and lending institutions locally and nationwide. With clients ranging from single professional practitioners to Fortune 200 companies, LBC&C is based in Garden City, NY with offices in New York City and Livingston, NJ.

Contact Information

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