Simon Cowell’s company ‘faces £1m lawsuit over X Factor bullying claims’

Simon Cowell is allegedly facing a fresh legal headache after a former X Factor singer has said she is just one of several acts who starred on the ITV show who now plan to file a multi-million-pound lawsuit against the judge's firm SyCo.

The singer, who hasn't been named, has told of the "tears, trauma and anxiety" behind the proposed lawsuit.

It's said that five solo acts and one group are approaching a leading law firm to sue, claiming that going on X Factor led to "bullying, mistreatment and neglect".

One claimant informed the Sunday Mirror that being on X Factor was a "horrific experience" and that they'd been "suffering for years" as a result.

The singer added: "Myself and five former acts have agreed to join forces and get the justice we feel we deserve.

"Simon needs to take responsibility. We lost a lot of money from having periods of our lives not making money to deal with trauma still ingrained from the show.

"It will be a £1million-plus case. It’s about justice, being compensated for the time and money we’ve spent with medical professionals trying to live normal lives again."

The female performer added: "We have a lot of evidence, including emails, recordings and psychological assessments that will show how we were mistreated.

"It’s very easy for the public to see us with make-up, beautiful clothes and dry ice floating around.

"But just moments before stepping on stage many contestants were sleep deprived, in tears and suffering trauma. Lots of contestants are from underprivileged backgrounds so getting on the show was like a winning lottery ticket.

"You’re sold the dream, but once you’re off the show, you’re thrown into the world with very little after care.

"Your mental wellbeing was of no one’s interest. We were just pawns in their game. When I entered the show I was confident, ambitious and charismatic. Now I am extremely untrusting, emotional, nervous and full of anxiety."

When the Mirror approached SyCo for comment it was asked to "make clear there is no allegation" that Simon was in "any way aware of, or personally involved in, the incidents or behaviour alleged by the group".

A spokesman for X Factor also told the publication: "Welfare of those taking part is our No1 priority and we have robust measures and welfare teams in place to ensure support is always available.

"We are unaware of any legal claims being filed against The X Factor and despite not being on air for several years, we remain open to discuss concerns with anyone who chooses to do so."

And a source familiar with the legal case commented, saying: "This is a serious legal claim and could end up with dozens more claimants banding together.

"Their lawyers believe they have a good case and plan to bring the claim in the coming months."

The new legal case comes after Simon, 62, faced similar action from five ex-contestants, including Katie Waissel.

The sibling duo Edward and John Grimes – better known as Jedward – have also previously taken a swipe at the ITV talent show, describing the contestants as "slaves".

Cher Lloyd, from the 2011 series, also agreed with the Irish twins, saying she felt exploited by the show.

OK! has contacted Simon Cowell's representatives for comment.


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