MIDTOWN EAST — A male domestic worker was hired to provide his married socialite boss with illicit rubdowns, a new lawsuit charges.
Bilguudei Ganhuyag, 24, is suing real estate heiress Patricia Bauman and her husband, John Landrum Bryant, for $6 million, claiming he was sexually harassed and fired a month into his job when he complained about Bryant ordering him to give a massage in his underwear and prying into his sex life.
"Bryant engaged in conduct toward [Ganhuyag] that exceeds all bounds usually tolerated by decent society," the lawsuit charges. It adds that Bryant's "true motivation [for hiring Ganhuyag] was to gain a potential sexual partner."
The couple hired Ganhuyag in December 2011 to clean their tony $7.1 million 11-room duplex on Beekman Place in Midtown East. Ganhuyag took the $50,000-a-year housekeeping gig and gave up a lucrative business building and maintaining fish tanks, according to his lawsuit filed Thursday in Manhattan Supreme Court.
Ganhuyag said after he accepted the job, Bryant, who designs jewelry and furniture, began to routinely ask about his sexual orientation and "specific sexual behaviors."
In early January, Bryant allegedly complimented Ganhuyag about his work and told him the only thing left to learn was "how to give a massage."
On Jan. 6, Bryant ordered Ganhuyag to strip down to his underwear and lie on his bedroom floor to learn how to give a massage, the lawsuit says. After he started touching Ganhuyag, Bryant allegedly removed his own pants.
When Ganhuyag objected, Bryant "appeared disappointed and angry," the lawsuit says. Ganhuyag claims he then feared he would lose his job, so he agreed to walk on Bryant's back but stopped after a short time.
The lawsuit alleges that Ganhuyag was fired later that day when his lawyer sent a letter to the couple's home claiming that he was a victim of sexual harassment and that the interaction over the massage had secretly been recorded on his cell phone.
A New York state law enacted in 2010 makes it illegal to sexually harass or discriminate against a domestic worker.
Ganhuyag's lawyer, Christopher Brennan, said his client may be the first male domestic worker to sue for sexual harassment under the law.
"This is an example of why that protection is necessary," he said.
Bauman is the president of the Bauman Foundation, a philanthropic organization with a $100 million endowment that honors the legacy of her late father.
She declined to comment when reached by phone.