A lawsuit has claimed that actor Vin Diesel, frontman for the Fast & Furious franchise, committed sexual battery in 2010 against his former assistant.
Filed on Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court, the lawsuit from Asta Jonasson alleges that Diesel “pinned her to a wall where he groped and masturbated in front of her,” according to the Hollywood Reporter (THR). Jonasson further claims that Diesel’s company, One Race Films, fired her in retaliation for resisting his sexual provocations.
Jonasson claims that she filed the lawsuit as a means to render nondisclosure agreements, which she signed at the time of her departure, obsolete in certain circumstances such as hers. According to her complaint, the incident occurred at the St. Regis Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia, in September 2010. Her job duties at the time included organizing and accompanying “Diesel to parties to ensure no photographs of him were taken.” She said that “she was asked to wait in the actor’s suite while he entertained other guests,” according to THR.
“Once they left, the suit claims he ‘grabbed Ms. Jonasson’s wrists, one with each of his hands, and pulled her onto the bed.’ She says she ‘immediately tried to escape his grasp,’ at which point she left the bedroom,” continued the outlet. “According to the complaint, Jonasson was followed by Diesel, who ‘dropped to his knees, pushed Ms. Jonasson’s dress up toward her waist, and molested her body’ after he restrained her.”
The suit alleged that Diesel pulled her underwear down, causing Jonasson to scream and run down the hallway toward the bathroom, knocking him to the floor. Diesel then allegedly leaped to his feet and “pinned her to the wall with the left side of his body, and again began to grope Ms. Jonasson’s body, including her breasts.” The actor then allegedly “pulled his penis out of his underwear” and masturbated until achieving climax.
“Ms. Jonasson heard Vin Diesel make groaning noises, then Vin Diesel quickly released her, went into the bathroom, and turned the sink on with the bathroom door open,” the complaint has claimed.
Jonasson said that Diesel’s sister, Samantha Vincent, president of One Race Films, then terminated her employment just hours after the incident. The company allegedly claimed that it didn’t need “any extra help” after having the job for less than two weeks. She also claimed that another One Race Films supervisor had propositioned her before the assault.
“The message was clear. Ms. Jonasson was fired for courageously resisting Vin Diesel’s sexual assault, Vin Diesel would be protected, and his sexual assault covered up,” the suit said.
Jonasson has claimed that Diesel, with the help of his company, committed sexual battery, gender-based discrimination, hostile work environment, and retaliation, leading to “humiliation, emotional distress and mental and physical pain.”
“Empowered by the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements, and with the protection of the Speak Out Act and recent revival of her claims by AB2777, Ms. Jonasson is unwilling to remain silent any longer and seeks to reclaim her agency and justice for the suffering she endured at the hands of Vin Diesel and One Race,” the suit stated.
Neither Diesel nor his representatives have publicly responded to the suit at the time of this writing.