According to a report from the Columbia Post-Courier, a Midlands, South Carolina attorney with an impressive string of election losses as a Republican candidate for various offices, including the U.S. House of Representatives, has been accused of sexual harassment, taking accused prostitute clients into the backroom for sex and offering female employees up to a $15,000 raise for providing sex as part of their duties.
The Post-Courier reports, "Billy Oswald, a 74-year-old personal injury attorney who has been active in Lexington County politics for decades," is on the receiving end of a lawsuit from former secretary Sharon Ross who worked for him for over a decade before quitting in 2020.
With the report noting that Oswald once served on the Lexington County Council up until 1982 before launching "eight unsuccessful bids for the S.C. House and one for Congress" including one last run in 2018, henow stands accused of a wide array of claims -- mostly sex-related.
According to the report, "Ross’s lawsuit alleges Oswald groped her breasts, placed his hand near her crotch and made inappropriate gestures. Oswald also brought prostitutes, some who were allegedly his legal clients or rental tenants, into his back office and conference room to perform sexual acts on him, according to the lawsuit. Employees 'could overhear moans and other noises of their rendezvous from adjacent offices,' including during normal work hours, the lawsuit stated."
Ross also claimed that her former boss took female employees out to lunch and then allegedly assured them they could land raises of between $10,000 and $15,000 for providing sexual services.
As part of her suit, Ross claims the final straw for her was when she asked for a raise and the then-72-year-old Oswald told her, "You haven’t earned a raise. You don’t deserve it. The only thing you’re good for is laying on your back,” which led her to quit.
West Columbia lawyer Jake Moore, who is representing Oswald dismissed the allegations, telling the Post-Journal: "The reason is fairly obvious, isn’t it? Most people file lawsuits for money. If all of this was going on and she was suffering such emotional injury from it, how come she stayed all of those years?”
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