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Female Ironworker Fired After Colleagues Photographed Her on Toilet: Suit

By Nicholas Rizzi | December 13, 2016 1:56pm
 An Ironworker at the Empire Outlets project sued the contractor and a co-worker for discrimination after the co-worker snapped pictures of her in the bathroom, a lawsuit claims.
An Ironworker at the Empire Outlets project sued the contractor and a co-worker for discrimination after the co-worker snapped pictures of her in the bathroom, a lawsuit claims.
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DNAinfo/Nicholas Rizzi

ST. GEORGE — A female ironworker at Staten Island's Empire Outlets mall was fired after she complained that a co-worker took photos of her in a bathroom and threatened to release them unless she had sex with him, a lawsuit claims.

Marline Salvat, of Long Island, faced immediate sexual harassment after starting work at the project in July, the suit which was first reported by the New York Daily News claims.

Just two weeks into the job, co-worker Anthony Sango approached her when she returned from a break and told her, "I saw you talking to that shop steward over there and I will tell your fiancé unless you pay me with your panties," according to the suit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court on Friday.

Salvat, who has a decade's worth of experience, reported the incident to the shop steward, who told her he reprimanded Sango.

But Sango repeatedly sexually harassed Salvat from then on and about a week later followed her to a porta-potty, the legal document claims.

While she was inside the bathroom, Sango banged on the door — forcing Salvat to push against it because the lock was broken — then he put his hand through a broken vent and snapped pictures of her as she sat on the toilet naked from the waist down, according to the suit.

Sango threatened to distribute the pictures unless Salvat agreed to have sex with him.

He later sent out the photos to other workers at the site and bragged about "having access to the female bathroom," the suit claims.

Salvat reported the incident and the broken bathroom to her bosses at Construction Resources, which is contracted to carry out the work, the lawsuit says.

They told Salvat to use the bathroom at the nearby St. George Ferry Terminal instead and that Sango would be fired, but he showed up to work the next day, according to the suit.

Salvat was then "illegally terminated" because of "non-existent and factually baseless performance issues," the suit claims.

Construction Resources did not immediately respond to a request for comment.