On Tuesday in a New York courtroom, Robert De Niro denied allegations of being abusive towards his former executive assistant and vice-president, who is currently seeking substantial damages. De Niro exclaimed “Shame on you!” as he testified.
Graham Chase Robinson observed alongside her legal team as De Niro grew increasingly angry while attorney Andrew Macurdy accused him of mistreating Robinson during her time as his assistant from 2008 until she left her position in 2019.
Robinson, aged 41, is requesting $12 million in compensation for the emotional distress and damage to her reputation that she alleges has resulted in her being unemployed and unable to overcome the trauma caused by her job. She was earning a yearly salary of $300,000 before resigning due to frustration with her interactions with Tiffany Chen, the girlfriend of De Niro, and the impact she believed it was having on the actor.
The jury is currently reviewing evidence related to a lawsuit from 2019, in which De Niro accused Robinson of theft. This includes allegations that she took items from him, such as five million points that could be redeemed for airline flights, and spent excessive amounts of time watching TV during work hours. De Niro is seeking to have Robinson return three years’ worth of her salary.
Macurdy inquired with De Niro on Tuesday about a rumor stating that he would urinate while talking to Robinson on the phone.
“Can we please stop with this ridiculousness? Did you really bring us all here for this?” De Niro exclaimed.
According to Robinson’s legal representative, De Niro allegedly contacted her twice while she was attending a family member’s funeral. However, De Niro refuted this claim and stated that he was unaware of her attendance at the funeral.
De Niro also denied he was verbally abusive to Robinson and angrily rebuked her allegation that he told her he preferred that she scratch his back rather than using a back-scratching device. The actor said it might have happened once or twice, but “never was with disrespect or lewdness.”
In the end, he glared at Robinson with anger and yelled, “You should be ashamed, Chase Robinson!”
Without delay, he uttered a sorry in a more subdued tone, while casting a quick look towards judge Lewis J Liman.
From the start of the trial on Monday, De Niro has consistently referred to the proceedings as “nonsense.” When questioned by the plaintiff’s lawyer on Tuesday, he stated, “The entire case is absurd and ridiculous, but I am present.”
De Niro, who is 80 years old, has been in the movie industry for six decades and has earned two Oscars. He has portrayed unforgettable characters in movies such as The Deer Hunter and Raging Bull. His most recent project is Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon.
The experiment is scheduled to continue until November 10th.
The report was contributed by the Associated Press.