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EEOC sues Fleming's for harassment

PHOENIX The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has filed a lawsuit on behalf of male employees at a Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse and Wine Bar in Scottsdale who alleged they were victims of sexual harassment from male managers.

The lawsuit, filed last week in U.S. District court here, claims managers committed same sex harassment against employee Jonathan Pilkington and a class of men, including grabbing their genitals and buttocks. The suit also alleges Fleming’s fired Pilkington in retaliation because he complained of the harassment.

The restaurant, in the DC Branch area of Scottsdale, is one of more than 40 steakhouses founded by industry veterans Paul Fleming and Bill Allen and owned by OSI Restaurant Partners, Inc., in Tampa, Fla.

Joseph Kadow, executive vice president and general counsel for OSI, said the lawsuit is without merit and the company will vigorously defend itself.

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