Sondland, who became a media figure thanks to his televised testimony during the live impeachment inquiry and Will Ferrell’s Saturday Night Live impersonation of him last week, is being accused of actions before he became an ambassador in June 2018.
Three women said Sondland, then a prominent businessman, lured them to what they thought were business meetings, but turned into uncomfortable incidents. Sondland was then the founder and CEO of the Provenance Hotels chain, which spans 19 locations across the US. The incidents allegedly happened in years spanning 2003 to 2010.
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Sondland has denied all of the allegations.
Nicole Vogel claims she met Sondland in 2003. At the time, she was looking to launch a magazine, and Sondland offered to point out investors and potential advertisers. They had dinner, but then adjourned to Sondland’s Hotel Lucia, where Sondland lured her to a room. Vogel went with him, but claims when she tried to leave “Sondland’s voice stopped her.”
“I remember seeing my hand drop from the door handle,” she said. “I turned around, and he’s standing right behind me, and he says, ‘Can I just have a hug first?’” He then grabbed her face and attempted to kiss her. She rebuffed him and then left.
A few weeks later, they met again for lunch, ostensibly to discuss a Sondland investment in her magazine project. Vogel claimed Sondland placed his hand on her mid-thigh and left it there for ten minutes on the drive back to her office. He later turned down the opportunity to invest.
Jana Solis claimed she met with Sondland for lunch, hoping to acquire a client for her employer, an insurance company and investment advisory. The meeting went well, but Sondland slapped her backside as they were leaving and said, “I look forward to working with you.” He later invited her to his home to view an art collection, but that meeting deteriorated when Sondland allegedly exposed h