A cosmetics entrepreneur was awarded $ 300,000 after a jury sided with one of three claims in a civil lawsuit filed against a member of venture capital firm Pasadena Angels, Inc., according to reports. court documents.
On October 6, a jury discovered that Jamie Nicole Baca had been sexually assaulted during a 2017 visit with Mustapha Baha to discuss a potential investment of $ 25,000 in his now dissolved company, JNK Cosmetics / J .Nicole Skincare, according to court documents, including the verdict form.
However, jurors dismissed Baca’s other two claims: for bodily harm and for “intentionally inflicting emotional distress,” the verdict form reads.
The jury awarded Baca $ 200,000 in past damages and $ 100,000 in future damages, according to court documents.
Baca filed a lawsuit in 2018, alleging that Baha forced himself on her while discussing the investment at her home.
Baca initially went to the Pasadena Angels to present her company in 2016, according to a statement from the Dordulian Law Group, which represented her. Discussions about an investment in the company took place in the fall of 2017, according to the complaint.
Baca sent Baha an invitation on LinkedIn asking him why he suddenly stopped showing interest, the statement said. They have met in person three times to discuss an investment. Baha was accused of making inappropriate comments in the second meeting and making unwanted sexual advances to the businesswoman in the last meeting, according to her complaint.
For this third meeting, Baha invited Baca to his home office in San Marino where he made physical contact with her, including kissing her, according to her complaint. He told her that he would only invest in his business if they had sex, he added.
Dordulian said the jury award was justification for his client.
âAs is often the case with rich and powerful men, when the woman does not accept what is asked, the man just feels that it is up to him to take,â Baca’s lawyer said, Samuel Dordulian. “But we were able to gather the evidence against Baha in this matter, and justice prevailed.”
Linda Savitt, Baha’s lawyer, said in a statement that her client is an honest citizen who has been falsely accused. Baha has been exonerated from two of the three complaints against him in the case, Savitt said, adding that she planned to file petitions after the trial.
“The verdict was inconsistent and therefore we believe it will be overturned,” she said.
Pasadena Angels, Inc. and a second member at the time were initially named as defendants, but the complaints against them were dismissed, according to court records.