Lots of fun in the legal land of TapOut this week. A few days ago we mentioned the sketchy shit going on with the estate of founder Charles ‘Mask’ Lewis. Now we find out that Affliction may not be the only MMA clothing company with psychotic management. The company just lost a lawsuit brought by a former employee who accused them of scamming workers out of overtime pay and ‘intentional infliction of emotional distress.’
Crazy Todd Beard and his preggo-punching ways may have given Affliction a PR black eye, but he never cost the company 3.2 million dollars like Marc ‘Old Dude’ Kreiner. Kreiner’s the business guy TapOut brought in to help take the company to the next level. From the sounds of this lawsuit, it sounds like he might have taken that responsibility a bit too seriously:
Kreiner yelled and screamed at plaintiff, hurling insults and false accusations at her, in order to humiliate and frighten her into quitting to avoid paying her wages owed and to stop her from complaining about unpaid wages.
Kreiner frequently came onto the sales floor, where plaintiff was working, and went on unprovoked rampages, in which he would act violently and belligerently. He did so in the presence of the entire sales staff and directed such conduct at Thomas and, on occasion, other employees.
Kreiner singled out Thomas several times, more than defendants’ other salespersons. Kreiner called Thomas an ‘idiot’ and accused her of being ‘unqualified’ for her job, ‘incompetent’ as a salesperson, and ‘ignorant’ because she complained about defendants’ illegal activities. Kreiner frequently became physically violent at work, throwing objects across the office and gesturing violently, in an effort to intimate and scare plaintiff Thomas.
Kreiner, frequently and in an extremely hostile and confrontational manner, accused plaintiff and other salespersons of not selling enough product or not watching enough ‘ultimate fighting’ on their own time, regardless of, and without any knowledge of, how much a given employee was selling and regardless of how much ultimate fighting a salesperson watched during his or her free time.
I especially like the part where he’d freak out over the amount of time employees spent watching MMA. Now there’s a guy who’s passionate about the sport! Now that passion has translated into some serious fines. A jury awarded former employee Michelle Thomas $840,000 in ‘compensatory damages’, as well as a 2.4 million dollar Fuck You in punitive damages because “TapouT acted with malice toward Thomas.”
Meanwhile, I’m sure many of you call the things you read above ‘a regular work week.’ Well, don’t just sit there. This is America. File a lawsuit and sue the shit out of your company! You’ll either get crushed horribly, or make out like you won the lottery!