British comedian and actor Russell Brand has been charged with sexual assault, according to police in London. On Sunday, the police "received a report of sexual assault" that is said to have occurred 20 years ago in the Soho district of London, the Metropolitan Police said on Monday. Police officers are in contact with the woman concerned and “will offer her support”.
Based on joint research, several British media reported on allegations of sexual violence against Brand on Saturday. Accordingly, four women accuse the now 48-year-old of having abused them between 2006 and 2013. The ex-husband of US pop singer Katy Perry categorically rejects the allegations.
Police said they were in contact with newspapers and Channel 4 documentary filmmakers "to ensure that anyone who believes they have been the victim of a sexual offense knows how to report it to the police."
According to research published in the Sunday Times, one of the women said Brand raped her in his home in Los Angeles. Another said she was sexually assaulted by the star during a three-month relationship when she was just 16 and still in school. In addition to the four women with allegations of abuse, other women reported that Brand had emotionally exploited and abused them.
The Times and Sunday Times reported Monday that more women had come forward about Brand's behavior in the early 2000s. However, the newspapers initially did not publish any further information about it.
Brand's former employers BBC and Channel 4 as well as a production company have announced investigations. A spokesman for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak called the allegations "very serious and concerning." Sunak made it clear that “there should never be room for harassment, no matter where.” Brand's publisher Bluebird announced that it would postpone "all future publications".
Shortly after the allegations emerged, Brand performed at a sold-out comedy event in London. However, the Theater Royal Windsor said on Monday that its show scheduled for Tuesday had been postponed.
Brand began his career as a comedian in the early 2000s. Between 2006 and 2013, when the crimes he was accused of took place, he was at the height of his fame: He worked for several British television channels and appeared in several Hollywood films, such as alongside Kristen Bell in "Never Have Sex With Your Ex Again ".