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50 models accuse ‘at least’ 25 industry figures of sexual misconduct

The Boston Globe’s Pulitzer-winning Spotlight team has published a report on the fashion industry, naming photographers including Patrick Demarchelier

The fashion industry is having its moment of reckoning. We’ve already heard multiple accusations levelled against Bruce Weber and Mario Testino, but it seems that was only the tip of the iceberg, as the Boston Globe yesterday published a long and detailed investigative report examining the culture of abuse which is apparently rampant. One of its authors, Sacha Pfeiffer, was on the Pulitzer-winning team which broke the story of widespread sexual abuse cover-ups in the Catholic church in 2002.

Speaking to over 50 models for the story (many of whom, fearing career repercussions, asked to remain anonymous) the Globe’s Spotlight team revealed serious complaints from inappropriate comments to rape. In total, the models “made credible allegations of sexual misconduct against at least 25 photographers, agents, stylists, casting directors, and other industry professionals”. Of those 25, only a handful of names have been released so far.

One of the most high-profile people of those whose names have been made public is Patrick Demarchelier, who has enjoyed a long career in the industry lensing campaigns for brands including Louis Vuitton, Dior, Chanel, and Calvin Klein. Like Testino, he is known for his ties to the British Royal Family, previously acting as Princess Diana’s personal photographer. The Globe interviewed seven women who accused Demarchelier of unwanted sexual advances – including asking a teenager whether he could perform oral sex on her – albeit in far cruder terms.

“We have informed Patrick we will not be working with him for the foreseeable future” read a statement from Condé Nast, who had a longstanding relationship with Demarchelier. 

Prominent stylist Karl Templer is also accused, along with David Bellemere and Greg Kadel, both known for their work with Victoria’s Secret, as well as Seth Sabal and Andre Passos – the latter of which former model Dasha Alexander said penetrated her with his fingers when she was 15, saying it would give the photos “more emotion.”

All those named have denied the allegations.