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Fired Aerobics Teacher Sues Fonda, Hayden, Asks $8.3 Million in Damages

Actress Jane Fonda and her husband, Assemblyman Tom Hayden (D-Santa Monica), were accused of violating federal racketeering laws in a Los Angeles federal court suit filed Wednesday by a former employee, who claims she was wrongfully fired from the film star’s exercise studio in Beverly Hills.

Audrey Pressman, an aerobics instructor for more than five years at The Workout, seeks a total of $8.3 million in compensatory and punitive damages in a civil action prepared by Beverly Hills attorney Mitchel Jay Lane.

The suit alleges that Fonda and Hayden violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act by wrongfully denying wages, salaries, commissions and other benefits due employees in order to increase funds available to Fonda and Hayden through the Campaign for Economic Democracy, a political organization formed by the couple in the late 1970s.

Attorney Larry Stein, who has represented the couple in the past in similar wrongful discharge suits, said Pressman had been fired for “insubordination and other inappropriate action.”

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“This is a simple case of a disgruntled employee and her overzealous attorney,” he said.


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