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Firm Accused of Sexual Harassment

March 14, 1997|Times Staff and Wire Reports

Two women have filed separate lawsuits accusing an Orange County securities firm of sexual harassment, citing a stream of incidents that allegedly included groping, kissing and attempts at sexual relations. The women contend that Foresight Capital Management Inc. in Irvine and its president, Robert Lechman, fostered a hostile environment for the firm's few female workers. One suit also names as defendants brokers Rene Molina, Greg Escalante and Nader Mokri. Lechman and the brokers deny any wrongdoing and assert that the allegations are fabricated. In one suit, Gail King Collins of Mission Viejo alleges that she was subjected to "constant crude behavior," the "incessant use of profanity" and unwelcome sexual advances. In the other suit, Nancy Hartman White of South Laguna accused the defendants of creating "an intimidating, hostile and offensive work environment" and failing to take "appropriate corrective action" when she complained.

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