Game of Thrones actress Esmé Bianco sues Marilyn Manson for sexual assault
Game of Thrones actress Esmé Bianco is suing Marilyn Manson, accusing the musician of sexual assault and battery in a lawsuit filed Friday in California. Bianco previously alleged that Manson, whose real name is Brian Warner, had physically and sexually abused her during their past relationship.
This is the first lawsuit filed against Manson since multiple women, including Westworld star Evan Rachel Wood, accused him of sexual and physical abuse in February. Manson has consistently denied the claims.
"Mr. Warner used drugs, force, and threats of force to coerce sexual acts from Ms. Bianco on multiple occasions," Bianco's lawsuit states, alleging that he "raped Ms. Bianco in or around May 2011."
"For far too long my abuser has been left unchecked, enabled by money, fame and an industry that turned a blind eye," Bianco wrote in a statement to EW. "Despite the numerous brave women who have spoken out against Marilyn Manson, countless survivors remain silenced, and some of their voices will never be heard."
"My hope is that by raising mine I will help to stop Brian Warner from shattering any more lives and empower other victims to seek their own small measure of justice," she continued.
In a statement to EW, Manson's lawyer Howard King said, "These claims are provably false. To be clear, this suit was only filed after my client refused to be shaken down by Ms. Bianco and her lawyer and give in to their outrageous financial demands based on conduct that simply never occurred. We will vigorously contest these allegations in court and are confident that we will prevail."
The suit also names Manson's former manager Tony Ciulla and his company Ciulla Management as defendants, claiming that they "knew of Mr. Warner's conduct and benefitted financially from allowing this abuse to continue."
"This attempt to involve Ciulla Management in this action is not only legally meritless but also offensive and absurd," a lawyer for the company said in a statement to EW. "We look forward to formally contesting these completely frivolous allegations."
In her complaint, Bianco alleges that Manson "made his first sexual overtures" toward her in 2007, repeatedly asking her for nude photos, and flew her to Los Angeles in 2009 to film a music video. "She was told to wear lingerie as her 'costume' for the video. She was not provided food during the four days she spent in Los Angeles, but was given drugs and alcohol," the lawsuit states.
During this time, "Ms. Bianco was threatened and physically beaten by Mr. Warner," the suit continues. "Mr. Warner repeatedly told Ms. Bianco that he would come to her room and rape her during the night....He attempted to force her to perform sexual acts on camera with another woman who was present throughout the shoot. Perhaps most horrifyingly, Mr. Warner locked Ms. Bianco in the bedroom, tied her to a prayer kneeler, and beat her with a whip that Mr. Warner said was utilized by the Nazis. He also electrocuted her."
The lawsuit goes on to detail multiple incidents of physical and sexual abuse that allegedly occurred during Bianco and Manson's relationship, claiming that Manson "committed sexual acts with Ms. Bianco when she was unconscious or otherwise unable to consent" and sexually battered her repeatedly.
"I basically felt like a prisoner," Bianco previously told New York Magazine's The Cut. "I came and went at his pleasure. Who I spoke to was completely controlled by him. I called my family hiding in the closet."
Bianco also alleges that Manson violated human trafficking laws by "[employing] fraud to bring" the British actress to the U.S., under pretenses of "work opportunities that never appeared." The lawsuit adds that "Mr. Warner used both fraudulent offers of movie and music video roles to convince Ms. Bianco to travel to Los Angeles, whereupon Mr. Warner then made threats of force and performed violent sexual acts on Ms. Bianco to which she did not consent."
Manson is also currently under investigation by the L.A. County Sheriff's Department for allegations of domestic violence, and was dropped by his record label in the wake of the abuse accusations in February.