Paula Abdul has sued TV producer Nigel Lythgoe for alleged sexual assault.
The 61-year-old singer launched a lawsuit against the ‘American Idol’ executive producer in Los Angeles on Friday (Dec. 29).
In documents obtained by People, Abdul has accused Lythgoe, 74, of assaulting her on two separate occasions.
She alleges that Lythgoe assaulted her in the early 2000s, during an early season of ‘American Idol’.
Abdul also claims that she was assaulted during her tenure on ‘So You Think You Can Dance’, the TV dance competition that featured Abdul and Lythgoe as judges.
Abdul – who is suing for sexual assault/battery, sexual harassment, gender violence and negligence – has alleged that Lythgoe sexually assaulted her assistant, too.
What’s more, Abdul has claimed that she was “discriminated against in terms of compensation and benefits compared to one of the show’s male judges and the host”.
She’s also claimed that she was “the target of constant taunts, bullying, humiliation and harassment”.
Lythgoe, 19 Entertainment Inc., FremantleMedia North America Inc., American Idol Productions Inc. and Dance Nation Productions Inc. have all been named as defendants in the lawsuit.
Abdul turned 60 in June 2022, and she previously admitted that it marked a turning point in her life.
The TV star explained at the time that she wanted to show other people how to “combat bullies”.
Speaking to PEOPLE, she shared: “Being 60 this past year was such an incredible trajectory change for me, of really wanting to build and leave a legacy behind.
“That of kindness and support and helping others who can’t stand up for themselves, to learn to how to combat bullies, to have the self-assuredness that you can do anything that you put your mind to.
“Talent is only half of it. It’s the perseverance, the stick-to-itness, and undying belief in yourself.”