Topshop boss Sir Philip Green reportedly grabbed women’s breasts and slapped female employees’ bottoms, according to a member of the House of Lords.
Lord Peter Hain publicly read a complainant’s allegations against the Arcadia group chairman during a session of the House of Lords on Thursday. The complaint said that “hundreds of grievance cases” were raised against Sir Philip with human resources.
"‘He was touching and repeatedly slapping women staff's bottoms, grabbing thighs, and touching legs,’” Lord Hain quoted from the complaint.
“‘Some were worn down with spiralling legal costs costing them a fortune. He broke some in the end. It was horrible ... He is still doing exactly the same thing. It is rife, it happened all the time. I saw him grab the breasts of others. This has gone on for long time.’”
This is the latest chapter in the free speech battle between Sir Philip and Lord Hain, a Labour peer who served as a cabinet secretary under former UK prime minister Tony Blair. Sir Philip had previously taken out legal injunction against the Daily Telegraph, preventing the publication of allegations of sexual harassment and racial abuse.
After public speculation of the businessman in question, Lord Hain named Sir Philip in the House of Lords in October 2018. Parliamentary privilege allows MPs and peers to speak in parliament without fear of legal action.
In a statement to the Guardian addressing Lord Hain’s latest allegations, Sir Philip said, "How sad somebody who already has proven they're prepared to abuse the system wants to continue to behave in this manner."
Sir Philip has previously denied all the allegations.
It was reported on Wednesday that Green would shut 23 stores in his Arcadia group empire. These closures will reportedly affect Burton, Dorothy Perkins, and Topshop stores, putting 520 jobs at risk.