Matt Lauer stunned locals when he was allegedly spotted having a sit-down chat with accused New York cafe owner Marie Eiffel, the subject of a federal human trafficking lawsuit brought forth by eight ex-employees.
The disgraced Today anchor was accompanied by a female pal while chatting with the owner on Wednesday for “well over an hour.”
An eyewitness said Eiffel feared her business would be done for good after news of the lawsuit was published via the Shelter Island Reporter, revealing claims from ex-employees who alleged she spanked, groped and choked them.
The plaintiffs had been employed by Eiffel in either 2021 or 2022 and were from Malaysia, Thailand, Colombia or Ecuador. Among the defendants is also the New York-based company InterExchange, which sponsored them to work in the U.S.
“The fact they both think it’s okay to be seen together is just mind-blowing,” one source told The Sun of Eiffel and Lauer. “This other woman was with Matt and she was also lending her support. She told Marie not to worry, that she’s ‘not on an island alone’ in this scandal, meanwhile, they are literally on an island, and it is basically #MeToo Island.”
According to the eyewitness, “Matt was telling Marie to try not to obsess about who amongst her employees had leaked to the press that she was facing this lawsuit.” RadarOnline.com has reached out to a rep for Lauer for comment.
Lauer has been staying low-key in the Hamptons since he lost his job on Today following sexual assault allegations, after which his wife, Annette Roque, officially filed for divorce from Lauer in Suffolk County, New York.
As for Eiffel, accusers claimed that she allegedly “routinely spanked Plaintiffs on the buttocks, groped female employees’ breasts, choked employees, and made sexually harassing, demeaning, and discriminatory comments about their race and looks.”
“In addition, Defendants engaged in wage theft by illegally failing to pay portions of Plaintiffs’ hard-earned wages and withholding Plaintiffs’ tips in violation of the N.Y. Labor Law,” according to the lawsuit.
Eiffel denied the allegations in a statement to the Reporter, claiming she had not been served but hired an attorney upon learning about the suit.
She also provided emails from recent foreign employees who praised her and thanked her for the opportunity of working at her cafe.
One in particular expressed gratitude to Eiffel for giving him the chance to learn “how to take care of myself or how to be independent or improve my English level.” They added, “I am very grateful to have you as my boss and friend.”