Hot Yoga Guru Ordered To Pay $6.4 Million In Sexual Harassment Suit
Earlier this morning we reported that Bikram Choudhury, the founder of an eponymous version of yoga, would be paying out over $900K to his former attorney. She alleged that he sexually harassed her and then fired her when she looked into claims he had sexually assaulted his yoga students.
That $924,500 awarded yesterday was compensatory damages for the attorney in question, Minakshi Jafa-Bodden. Today the same jury sent a message to Choudury by awarding her an additional $6.4 million in punitive damages, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Jafa-Bodden told the Times she was "gobsmacked" by the size of the damages. She said, "I feel vindicated, I'm elated." She called him "a dangerous, dangerous predator."
The Times says neither Choudhury nor his attorney commented on the verdict.
In testimony today, he said he hasn't been making any money lately. Attendance has been down and he said he's losing money or only breaking even in his teacher training sessions. He said he has nearly had to declare bankruptcy. He said, "I have to borrow money from my family and friends to pay the bill."
He did admit to owning 40 luxury cars that include Bentleys and Rolls Royces. Looks like he might have to start selling those off to pay his mounting legal bills—especially since this kind of publicity isn't going to do anything to help his business:
Can we stop doing Bikram now???— Adriene Mishler (@yogawithadriene) January 26, 2016