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East L.A. Female Deputies Deny That They Had To Submit To Sexual Favors

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An L.A. County Sheriff's Dept. patrol car (Photo by KingoftheHill. via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)
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A group of L.A. County female deputies have spoken out against a lawsuit that says female deputies were expected to perform sexual favors for a group of male deputies.The lawsuit filed by Guadalupe Lopez, who was stations at East Los Angeles’ Sheriff’s station in Boyle Heights beginning in 2011, alleges an underground group of male deputies known as the “Banditos” sexually harassed, hazed and retaliated against female deputies. Female deputies both past and present from the East Los Angeles station responded by saying they never experienced such treatment and feel insulted by the claims, NBC reports.

Yolanda Villanueva, the mother of one of the female deputies, read a statement on behalf of the group:

“Our reputation as female professionals, wives, mothers, sisters is unjustly questioned as a result of her claims.”

The statement continues by saying the deputies stand by their male counterparts. They add that the lawsuit undermines female deputies:

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“In making these allegations and pursuing her own agenda, Guadalupe Lopez has diminished, not only what we females at East Los Angeles worked so hard to achieve, but also the progress made and the respect female law enforcement officers across the country have earned.”

An attorney representing Lopez responded by saying the claims were “accurate” and that she stands by the assertions made in the lawsuit. The laywer’s press release says she never claimed the majority of female deputies as the East Los Angeles Station were affected.