AceShowbiz - %cMary-Kate Olsen% and %cAshley Olsen%'s Dualstar Entertainment Group denies mistreating its interns after being sued for alleged wage theft. Around 40 past and present interns claimed they suffered from wage theft after working extended hours at the company.
Dualstar tells E! News that the mistreatment of interns is simply inaccurate. "As an initial matter, Dualstar is an organization that is committed to treating all individuals fairly and in accordance with all applicable laws," says the company of the twin stars.
"The allegations in the complaint filed against Dualstar are groundless, and Dualstar will vigorously defend itself against plaintiff's claims in court, not before the media," the company adds, "Dualstar is confident that once the true facts of this case are revealed, the lawsuit will be dismissed in its entirety."
Page Six previously reported that around 40 past and present Dualstar interns led by a former design intern named Sahista Lalani filed a lawsuit against Mary-Kate and Ashley, alleging the twins failed to pay them. Sahista claimed she was treated poorly, toiling for free doing menial tasks at Dualstar in 2012.
"She was very demanding," Sahista said of the head technical designer for The Row. "I was doing the work of three interns. I was talking to her all day, all night. Emails at nighttime for the next day, like 10 p.m. at night." She added, "It was like 100 degrees outside. I'd just be sweating to death. I probably carried like 50 pounds worth of trench coats [to Row factories]." She was allegedly hospitalized for dehydration for the job's demands.
Sahista worked for 50 hours per week "inputting data into spreadsheets, making tech sheets, running personal errands for paid employees, organizing materials, photocopying, sewing, pattern cutting, among other related duties," according to court papers. "You're like an employee, except you're not getting paid," she said, "They're kind of mean to you. Other interns have cried. I'd see a lot of kids crying doing coffee runs, photocopying stuff."
While Sahista never worked directly for Mary-Kate and Ashley, she liked the twins after seeing them at meetings. "They're really nice people," she said. "They were never mean to anyone. They're business people."
The suit said the interns should have been paid the minimum wage plus overtime as they did the same job as the paid employees without receiving any academic or vocational credit.