Former Idol Employee Ordered To Resolve Mario Vazquez Harassment Suit
Kris De Leon
Kris De Leon
Staff Writer, BuddyTV
After taking legal action against American Idol fourth season finalist Mario Vazquez, Magdaleno Olmos, the program’s former assistant production accountant, was ordered to arbitrate his harassment suit by the Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael C. Solner on Wednesday.

In March, a lawsuit was filed by Olmos in the Los Angeles Superior Court for complaining he was sexually harassed by the American Idol contestant, who reportedly withdrew from the competition before the finals began due to “personal reasons.” According to Olmos’ attorneys, however, Vazquez’s departure from the competition was involuntary and was a result of Olmos’ claim.

Olmos claimed that Vazquez started to sexually harass him in February 2005, and persisted him despite his attempt to stop Vazquez’s sexual advances. Olmos, who began working on American Idol in October 2002, stated in his lawsuit that he tried to report the incident to a superior at American Idol, who allegedly said that if he did not stop complaining, he would not return for season 5. Olmos claimed that he was “terminated” in May 2005 in the middle of American Idol’s fifth season.

Apart from his legal complaint on Vazquez, Olmos also mentioned Fox Entertainment and FremantleMedia, American Idol’s production company, as defendants in his lawsuit for wrongful termination and violation of California's Fair Employment and Housing Act. He was reportedly seeking unspecified compensatory and corrective damages.

But when Olmos was employed by FreemantleMedia to work on American Idol, he knew that he was signing an agreement to "arbitrate all disputes and not file a lawsuit," according to KTTV. Consequently, Judge Solner settled with a defense motion to send the case to arbitration and put a hold on the lawsuit.

"It's the right decision," defense attorney George R. Hedges said. "[Olmos'] claim has no merit."

While the defense was pleased with the judge’s ruling, Olmos’ party remains disappointed in having the case go before an arbitrator.

-Kris De Leon, BuddyTV Staff Columnist

Source: RealityTV World

(Photo Courtesy of Yahoo)