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In August 2019, De Niro initially sued Robinson for $6 million, accusing her of “breaching her fiduciary duties,” which Robinson followed with a countersuit in October 2019, alleging harassment and gender discrimination. The two have been going back and forth about which lawsuit was the source and where it should be argued—in state or federal court.
Now, according to The Hollywood Reporter, De Niro has taken his allegations to the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office with the hopes of bringing criminal charges against his former employee. Gregory Bennett, De Niro’s attorney, told the federal judge he’s ready to file counterclaims, saying Robinson “cannot possibly cite to any facts supporting a plausible argument that the instant application is futile, in bad faith, was unduly delayed or that it would result in any prejudice.”
Robinson’s lawyer, Alexandra Harwin, has responded to the counterclaims, saying they are “quintessentially bad faith” and just another instance of retribution.
“Documents that the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office apparently received from Defendants showed instances of Canal mischaracterizing entire ledgers of charges as improper spending when such charges were actually bona fide work-related expenditures,” Harwin wrote. “For example, Canal accused Ms. Robinson of improperly spending thousands of dollars on flowers, but documents reflect that these were purchases for the Canal office, Mr. De Niro’s apartment, parties and events Mr. De Niro hosted, cast on Mr. De Niro’s productions, and other legitimate purchases for Defendants.”
Harwin continued, “After reviewing the scattershot and deficient basis for Canal’s claims against Ms. Robinson and interviewing Mr. De Niro himself, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office closed its investigation and declined to bring any charges against Ms. Robinson.”
De Niro’s original suit claimed that Robinson spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on the company credit card, took possession of frequent flyer miles, and watched an “astounding” number of hours of Netflix shows during work. Robinson’s countersuit accused De Niro of being verbally abusive, making “sexually charged comments to her,” and more. In January 2020, De Niro then made allegations that Robinson attempted to blackmail him before filing his initial suit.