A spokesman for business mogul Richard Branson has issued a statement apologising for an alleged incident of sexual misconduct that took place on his private island in 2010, but denying any knowledge of the events that supposedly took place.
Yesterday, backing singer Antonia Jenae came forward to accuse Branson of touching her inappropriately during a party on Necker Island, having been invited there after playing a show with Joss Stone on nearby Tortola Island.
The singer, from Florida, made the allegations in an interview with UK newspaper The Sun, claiming that Richard Branson approached her without warning and ‘motorboated’ as he was leaving the party. She told the publication:
“We were by the bar and he was saying bye to everyone. He came up to me and put his face in my breasts. He went ‘brrrrrr’ and just walked away. It was surreal, totally out of the blue. Joss and I were like, ‘What the hell was that?!’ Everyone was wondering why I wasn’t angry because I’m usually a firebrand. But I was just too shocked. His behaviour was disgusting. I feel like it was sexual assault.”
Jenae also claimed that there was a “big beautiful statue of a goddess [with] her boobs out” by the billionaire’s swimming pool, and that he had tried to convince her to show him her breasts at some point during the party, but that she said no.
A spokesman for Richard Branson’s Virgin company issued an apology overnight, saying:
“Joss Stone, members of her family and band were invited to Necker in June 2010. Everyone appeared to enjoy their time. Richard has no recollection of this matter. Neither do his family and friends who were with him at the time. There would never have been any intention to offend or make anyone feel uncomfortable. Richard apologizes if anyone felt that way.”
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