“Black-ish” star Jenifer Lewis is suing L.A. Fitness, claiming that the gym company knowingly employed a con-man who bilked her out of more than $50,000 after romancing her.
In the suit, filed earlier this month, Lewis claims that L.A. Fitness permitted the gym manager “to perpetrate his con against one of its members [Lewis] by fraudulently romancing her, and thus inflicting both irreparable emotional trauma and significant financial damage.”
Lewis claims that the manager used various aliases but went under the moniker Antonio W. as he romanced her and eventually fleeced her out of the money.
According to the suit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court earlier this month, Antonio W. buttered Lewis up with compliments using information that he’d obtained about her, and the two eventually became involved in a romantic relationship.
The lawsuit claims that the manager told Lewis an incredible tale, saying that he had a PhD from Oxford and that he only worked at LA Fitness “so he can help save lives because he had to kill so many people as a Navy SEAL.”
Lewis claims that Antonio W. laid a tale of financial hardship on her, and told her that he could retire from his job if she invested in his business idea. The actress claims she laid out supposed investments totaling $50,000 before she learned of his long history of scam artistry.
L.A. Fitness has not yet responded to TheWrap’s request for comment.
Alleging fraud, concealment, negligent hire and other counts, Lewis’ suit seeks unspecified damages.
Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.