Riot Games CEO, Nicolo Laurent, Sued for Sexual Harassment from Fired Employee

In new reporting by Vice Games, a former Riot Games employee Sharon O’Donnell is suing CEO Nicolo Laurent for sexual harassment.

O’Donnell was Nicolo Laurent’s executive assistant before she was fired in July of last year. She alleges that Laurent asked O’Donnell to "’cum’ over to his house while his wife was away.” He also allegedly talked about her underwear size. He also allegedly told O’Donnell, “that his wife was jealous of beautiful women.”

The lawsuit provides additional detail regarding the alleged harassment O’Donnell experienced,

“Shortly after Plaintiff was hired the Defendant Laurent began a pattern of harassing Plaintiff based on her sex or gender. This continued until the end of her employment.”

Harassment included remarks on O’Donnell’s physical appearance, telling her to “be more feminine,” and more. O’Donnell reportedly rebuffed Laurent and was allegedly fired over it. Additionally, according to Vice Games, she was not paid for the hours she had worked, which included overtime.

A spokesperson for Riot Games provided a statement to Vice Games,

"In this case, because some of the claims relate to an executive leader, a special committee of our Board of Directors is overseeing the investigation, which is being conducted by an outside law firm. Our CEO has pledged his full cooperation and support during this process, and we’re committed to ensuring that all claims are thoroughly explored and appropriately resolved."

This lawsuit follows a Kotaku report from 2018 which detailed sexual discrimination at Riot Games. Later Riot issued a statement discussing what they plan to change moving forward. Laurent even penned a letter to various CEOs in July 2020 discussing the past mistakes of Riot.

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A highly opinionated avid PC gamer, Poorna blindly panics with his friends in various multiplayer games, much to the detriment of his team. Constantly questioning industry practices and a passion for technological progress drive his love for the video game industry. He pulls no punches and tells it like he sees it. He runs a podcast, Gaming The Industry, with fellow writer, Joseph Bradford, discussing industry practices and their effects on consumers.