Following the news that Vince McMahon was named in a graphic sex trafficking suit by an ex-WWE staffer, the WWE founder is speaking out about the situation
Former WWE employee Janel Grant is suing Vince McMahon and former head of talent relations, John Laurinaitis, for abuse and sexual exploitation. Grant alleged that not only McMahon abused her but also trafficked her to other men as a “pawn” to secure talent deals with prospective wrestlers.
Grant claimed in her lawsuit that McMahon, Laurinaitis, and WWE violated the Trafficking Victims Prevention Act. She claimed she endured abuse for years while employed by WWE.
Not only is she seeking unspecific monetary damages, but Grant also seeks a declaratory judgment that a nondisclosure agreement she signed as a WWE employee is void. This would make the agreement enforceable.
In a statement to Deadline, Vince McMahon’s spokesperson said the lawsuit was “replete with lies, obscene made-up instances that never occurred, and a vindictive distortion of the truth.”
He will vigorously defend himself,” the spokesperson added.
Meanwhile, Ann Callis of Holland Law Firm, representing Grant in the lawsuit against Vince McMahon, issued this statement about the situation:
“Today’s complaint seeks to hold accountable two WWE executives who sexually assaulted and trafficked Plaintiff Janel Grant,” the statement reads. “As well as the organization that facilitated or turned a blind eye to the abuse and then swept it under the rug.”
Callis also pointed out that her client is a private and courageous person who suffered deeply at the hands of McMahon and Laurinatis. “Ms. Grant hopes that her lawsuit will prevent other women from being victimized. The organization is well aware of Mr. McMahon’s history of depraved behavior, and it’s time that they take responsibility for the misconduct of its leadership.”
WWE’s Parent Company, TKO Group Holdings, Issues Statement About Vince McMahon
Meanwhile, CNN reports that WWE’s parent company, TKO Group Holdings, has issued a statement regarding Vince McMahon’s role in the company.
The company stated that McMahon does not control TKO or oversee day-to-day operations at WWE. “While this matter pre-dates our TKO executive team’s tenure at the company, we take Ms. Grant’s horrific allegations very seriously,” the company stated. “And are addressing this matter internally.”
The lawsuit comes just days after TKO announced that Dwayne Johnson would join its board of directors. The company also inked a contract to make Netflix the exclusive home of WWE Raw starting in Jan. 2025.