Comedian Sara Pascoe has claimed that there are unnamed sexual predators working in the industry after Russell Brand was accused by multiple women of rape and sexual assault.
Brand was accused of rape and sexual assault after the publication of an investigation by The Times and Channel 4’s Dispatches programme.
He denies the allegations made against him, having posted a video saying there were ‘very serious allegations that I absolutely refute’ on YouTube before a Dispatches documentary titled Russell Brand: In Plain Sight was broadcast to the public.
Four women have made claims about Brand as part of the investigation into his alleged actions, with were said to have occurred between 2006 and 2013.
They include a woman who says she was sexually assaulted by Brand when she was 16 and he was 31, along with allegations from another woman who says Brand was physically, emotionally and sexually abusive towards her.
Another woman who was part of the investigation claims that Brand raped her at his Los Angeles home while the fourth allegation comes from a woman who said she worked for Brand and claims she was sexually assaulted and then threatened with legal action if she said anything.
Speaking to The Independent, comedian Sara Pascoe talked about the difficulties of naming figures within the industry after telling the publication that there was more than one unnamed predator.
Pascoe explained that a group of male and female comedians had tried setting up a union three times in the hopes of giving their fellow professionals someone to speak to.
She said: “We kept thinking that’s the problem – if we had a good enough union, there’d be a place where you could go and say, ‘There’s this person getting women drunk at festivals and taking advantage of them’.”
However, Pascoe has found that libel laws have made it impossible to name certain individuals without clear proof, explaining that ‘you can’t just tweet about it’ and that ‘fame really complicates it’.
“Are you going to be believed? Are people going to take that person’s side? Are you going to be accused of trying to make yourself famous,” she said about the challenges facing accusers.
“If you do the same job as someone, and they’re successful and you’re not – which is what’s happened with this particular predator – and you have this horrible thing happen to you at the beginning of your career, and you want to continue in that career.”
“Your literal choice is: am I known for ever as the person that person assaulted? Do I want everyone in comedy to know this about me? All you can do is offer better support as an industry.”
Pascoe said that there was more than one unnamed predator in the industry, including ‘a man that’s assaulted men’.