Another accusation tied to The Voice; Media mogul John de Mol blamed for culture of fear
Another person has come forward regarding claims of sexual harassment, abuse or assault linked to the television program The Voice of Holland. The spokesperson for the Public Prosecution Service (OM) in Noord-Holland would not say whether this report was also made against Ali B., but his attorney confirmed the allegation was made against him.
In response, RTL cut ties with Ali B., at least for the duration of the investigation into sexually transgressive behavior at The Voice, a spokesperson for RTL confirmed to ANP. The show has been broadcast on RTL 4 since its inception in 2010.
Ali B "completely disputes that he committed any criminal offence," said Bart Swier, the musician's lawyer. Swier would not comment further on the case. Another report of transgressive behavior was already filed against the rap musician, who started as a judge on The Voice in 2013. That complaint is believed to have been filed by a former contestant on the show.
The spokesperson would not say whether the new case was in regards to something that happened a long time ago, or if it was more recent. The report has yet to be assessed. No timeline for the process was given.
On Saturday, the program's production and airing was temporarily halted due to the first case filed with the OM, and more reports of sexually harassing behavior behind the scenes. The show's band leader, Jeroen Rietbergen, then acknowledged that the allegations specifically against him were accurate, and he resigned. He said he had relationships of a "sexual nature" with women involved in The Voice of Holland.
His girlfriend, Dutch presenter Linda de Mol, then announced she broke off her relationship with Rietbergen and that she is suspending her work for the time being. Her brother is John de Mol, the 66-year-old media mogul credited with creating The Voice.
Internal culture of fear at Talpa
Anyone who dares to challenge John de Mol within his company often pays for it with dismissal, according to several former employees who spoke to AD in reaction to the scandal at The Voice of Holland.
Some former staff members spoke anonymously to the newspaper for fear how it might affect their future careers. Erik de Zwart, who worked for De Mol in the 1990s and again from 2003 to 2006, decided to speak on the record. The well-known radio and television producer also helped create TMF and Radio 538. The latter was eventually sold to De Mol's company, Talpa, and De Zwart went on to become a director at Talpa Radio International.
"Everyone is afraid of him. When John de Mol walks into the workplace, the staff click their heels. Afraid of the big boss. If you go against him, it's an exit for you," De Zwart said. He spoke of a culture of fear at Talpa and called the state of affairs at the company "a manipulative, intimidating way of leadership and atmosphere in which people work."
Other former employees told the newspaper that it is generally known within the company that De Mol regularly snaps at people in the workplace, even about things like the temperature of his coffee. "Everyone is wary of De Mol, 100 percent," said a former staff member.
Reporting by ANP