On Saturday (9.16) three separate UK news organizations reported that comedian/actor Russell Brand has been accused of rape, sexual assault and abuse from four different women who knew him over a seven-year period during the height of his fame.
Brand has denied the allegations.confirming that all of his relationships were consensual.
The Sunday Times, The Times of London and Channel 4’s “Dispatches” stated that one accuser alleged that she had been raped, while three other women accused him of sexual assault, including one who added that he’d been physically and emotionally abusive.
Each of the accusers stated that they felt ready to tell their stories after being approached by reporters, with some pointing to Brand’s newfound prominence as an online wellness influencer as a factor in their decision to describe their experiences.
Prior to the breaking news, Brand posted a video online denying the allegations, which had been outlined in two “extremely disturbing letters” from a “mainstream media” television company and a newspaper. Though he didn’t identify the news organizations by name, he stated:
“Amidst this litany of astonishing, rather baroque attacks are some very serious allegations that I absolutely refute.” “These allegations pertain to the time when I was working in the mainstream, when I was in the newspapers all the time, when I was in the movies and, as I have written about extensively in my books, I was very, very promiscuous.” “Now during that time of promiscuity the relationships I had were absolutely, always consensual.” “I was always transparent about that then, almost too transparent, and I am being transparent about it now as well.”
Over the years Brand has been criticized for expressing skepticism about the COVID-19 vaccination and interviewing contentious podcasters like Joe Rogan. The UK born celebrity also suggested that the reports were part of a coordinated attack designed to discredit him because of his views, saying “To see that transparency metastasized into something criminal, that I absolutely deny, makes me question is there another agenda at play.’
In the early 2000s Russell rose to fame as a stand-up comic in England, which led to starring roles on Channel 4 and later BBC Radio, where he developed a reputation for outrageous behavior and risqué banter. He subsequently made the jump to Hollywood, appearing in films such as Forgetting Sarah Marshall in 2008 and the remake of Arthur in 2011. Brand was married to U.S. pop star Katy Perry from 2010-2012.
In recent years, Brand transformed himself into a political commentator and influencer posting YouTube videos on subjects such as personal freedom and the COVID-19 pandemic.