A former employee of Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, NJ, Alice Bianco, has filed a lawsuit alleging se*xual harassment and manipulation at the club. Reported by the New York Post and first covered by Politico, the lawsuit accuses the club’s food and beverage manager, Pavel Melichar, of coercing Bianco into se*xual activities in exchange for job security and ‘protection.’
Bianco’s allegations detail that the harassment started soon after she began working at the golf club in 2021. Melichar, when contacted, did not acknowledge the accusations and declined to comment. Bianco decided to take legal action following a colleague’s report of Melichar’s misconduct to Donald Trump’s staff.
Interestingly, Alina Habba, who later became Trump’s attorney but was then a club member, reportedly contacted Bianco, expressing a desire to assist her. They exchanged texts discussing music, and Habba advised Bianco to dismiss her employment lawyer. Habba played a crucial role in negotiating a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) for Bianco, which, according to the lawsuit, provided a minimal settlement.
The lawsuit, as reported by NBC News, alleges that Habba falsely presented herself as a ‘neutral’ friend while working in the interests of the Lamington Farm Club and the former President, neither of whom are co-defendants in the case. Habba became Trump’s attorney a month after the NDA was finalized.
Bianco’s lawsuit argues that the NDA contravenes New Jersey law and seeks to invalidate its enforcement by the golf club. She is also asking for legal fees coverage and permission to keep the settlement funds. The legal action intends to inform the New Jersey Office of Attorney Ethics about Habba’s alleged misconduct. Nancy Erika Smith, Bianco’s lawyer, accused Habba of using unethical means to silence Bianco and gain favor with Trump.
Bianco and Habba have released statements, with Bianco highlighting the unawareness of her rights and the illegality of NDAs in se*xual harassment cases in New Jersey. She expressed feeling betrayed by Habba, saying, “All I knew was that the person claiming to be my friend and adviser threw me in the trash as soon as she pressured me into silence.”
This lawsuit brings to the forefront the critical issues of victim rights and the ethical use of non-disclosure agreements, especially in cases of se*xual harassment. Bianco’s case continues to develop, adding another layer to the ongoing conversation about workplace harassment and legal protections for victims.