Last week, former Tinder CEO Greg Blatt sued Tinder co-founder Sean Rad and the company’s former VP of marketing and communications Rosette Pambakian for defamation, stemming out of allegations of sexual assault Pambakian filedagainst him.
Responding to the suit, Rad and Pambakian have now called it a “public smear campaign against a sexual assault accuser under cover of a court proceeding,”. The duo have now put forth a demand for the case to be dismissed under California’s anti-SLAPP statue, which prevents the right of free speech.
In a statement issued exclusively to The Tech Portal, Orin Snyder, attorney for Sean Rad and Rosette Pambakian said, “This lawsuit is intended to muzzle Rosette and Sean from telling the truth about how Barry Diller and Greg Blatt stole from their employees and covered up sexual assault allegations. Unfortunately, unlawful retaliatory lawsuits like this one designed to silence victims and violate their First Amendment rights are all too common in the #metoo era.”
Pambakian has accused Blatt of sexual harassment after a Tinder holiday party of 2016. Pambakian stated that Blatt forcibly kissed and groped her, in response to which Blatt later responded that the incident was consensual. In the lawsuit, Blatt mentioned that Pambakian used to flirt with him routinely, and the alleged interaction happened with her consent.
The case first appeared in a different lawsuit including Rad in which he and other employees were seeking $1 Billion against Match Group and IAC., on grounds that these parent companies purposely undervalued Tinder to save millions of dollars in stocks.
Pambakian, who was initially associated with this lawsuit, had to later back off because of an agreement which was a part of her employment contract. Later, when the company ended her term in December of 2018, she filed a lawsuit against Match Group for sexual assault and inappropriate termination.
In addition to the the removal of defamation suit, the defendants have also demanded for their attorney fee to be covered.