James Deen is already embroiled in controversy after several adult film stars have come forward to accuse him of rape, and now the San Francisco-based fetish porn company that once employed him is under fire as well.
Kink.com is being accused of harboring unsafe work conditions, including allowing Deen to assault his co-stars and in another instance allegedly allowing an HIV-positive actor to work on set.
Deen, a male adult film star with a reputation as a feminist, was accused of rape by ex-girlfriend Stoya in a post last month that went viral.
“That thing where you log in to the internet for a second and see people idolizing the guy who raped you as a feminist,” she shared online. “That thing sucks. James Deen held me down and f****d me while I said no, stop, used my safeword. I just can’t nod and smile when people bring him up anymore.”
Since then, other adult film stars have come forward to accuse Deen of rape, saying he pushed past their boundaries and in some cases brutally forced sex acts on them.
— Mashable (@mashable) December 5, 2015
— Huffington Post (@HuffingtonPost) December 5, 2015
Deen is accused of sexual assault within the Kink.com set as well. This week, actress Ashley Fires told The Daily Beast that James Deen was the only actor she refused to work with after an incident in which he allegedly forced himself on her.
Fires described getting out of the shower at the studio when Deen approached her and rubbed his penis on her.
“He pushes me against the sink and starts grabbing on me and I was like, ‘No, no, no James, no,’ and he released me from his grasp, and says, ‘You know, later if you want to f**k around I’m in room whatever-it-was. I was like, ‘F**k you.’ I didn’t even know this guy, he was so out of line and entitled with my body.”
Deen was swiftly dropped by Kink.com, which noted that consent is of the utmost importance in its work.
“Consent and respect are sacrosanct,” the company said in a public statement. “Our performers deserve not only safe sets, but the ability to work without fear of assault. Rape or sexual assault, with or without a safe-word, off-set or on, should never be accepted as a hazard of adult production.”
But now reports indicate that the company itself has been accused of allowing abuses to take place. Buzzfeed found that Kink.com has faced four lawsuits this year claiming unsafe working conditions. A few days after Fires shared her story about being allegedly assaulted by Deen in the bathroom, fellow actress Nicki Blue also wrote about being raped by Deen.
She also pointed the finger at Kink.com, saying the company shared some of the blame.
Some of the lawsuits against Kink.com could have dire consequences. Three of the lawsuits — from Cameron Adams, Joshua Rodgers, and an anonymous plaintiff — claimed that they contracted HIV through the company’s negligence on set, though Kink.com claims that neither Adams nor Rodgers worked with someone who was HIV positive.
Another lawsuit claimed that the company did not protect an actor from being assaulted, and that she was then singled out for complaining about the unsafe work conditions.
Buzzfeed noted that all of the lawsuits are in the early stages and it is not clear what action, if any, the company will face.
Likewise, James Deen has yet to face any legal action for the alleged rapes. He maintains his innocence, saying on Twitter that he respects women and their boundaries.
[Picture by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images Entertainment]