Home Courts Sobo & Sobo condoned porn-watching by supervisor, attorney alleges

Sobo & Sobo condoned porn-watching by supervisor, attorney alleges

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A lawyer who formerly worked for Sobo & Sobo personal injury attorneys claims that a supervisor in the Poughkeepsie office repeatedly and openly displayed images of himself having sex.

Andra Korajkic of Dutchess County sued the firm and lawyer Raymond J. Iaia on April 2 in federal court in White Plains alleging that Iaia continuously exposed her to pornographic photographs and videos.

porn sobo and sobo“Defendants created a sexually hostile working environment,” the complaint states, “that no reasonable person would tolerate.”

“We look forward to defending against this meritless claim and to ultimately being vindicated from any liability,” outside attorney Jennifer S. Echevarria stated in an email. “While Sobo refuses to litigate this case through the media, we look forward to presenting evidence to a jury.”

Iaia, who has moved on to another law firm, did not reply to a message asking for his side of the story.

Sobo is based in Middletown and operates eight offices in the Hudson Valley and New York City. Iaia was the supervising attorney in Poughkeepsie.

Korajkic was hired as an associate attorney in October 2017. About a year later, according to the complaint, she began seeing sexually explicit photographs when she passed by Iaia’s office.

The office door was wide open and, if he realized someone was behind him, he would minimize the images on the computer screen.

When Korajkic had to enter Iaia’s office, the complaint states, she would call out his name before she got there, to give him time to hide the images.

Four more women – two paralegals, a receptionist and a lawyer – confirmed last May that they too had seen sexually explicit images on Iaia’s computer, according to the complaint. One of the paralegals dismissed the behavior as “boys will be boys” and “at least he gets his work done.”

After a mandatory sexual harassment meeting last June, Iaia’s conduct allegedly became more pervasive, the complaint states, as “he was openly viewing pornographic images and videos … in plain sight for everyone passing by his office to see.”

Korajkic claims she complained to managing partner Gregory Sobo in July and again in August with three more employees.

Sobo responded that no pornographic images had been found on Iaia’s computer, the complaint states, and the women explained that the images were on a Gmail account, and not on the firm’s computer server.

The meeting ended with Sobo purportedly stating, “Ray is a great attorney, even if he does not know how to lead.”

That evening, Iaia allegedly sent Korajkic a text message: “I am embarrassed that my personal life has been exposed in this way and brought into the office. I hope it is clear that whatever was seen was unintentional.”

The next day, Iaia publicly apologized to the employees, according to the complaint, stating that he had an open marriage but, if his wife were to visit the office, they should not mention the videos.

Weeks later, Iaia allegedly brought the woman depicted in the images to the office and was seen kissing her in the parking lot.

Korajkic also claims that Iaia was trying to sabotage her, by depicting her as a combative employee and insinuating that she was not good at her job.

On Sept. 16, the firm announced that Iaia was being moved to the Middletown office.

Korajkic states that she was “forced to resign” Oct. 14, arguing that “Sobo & Sobo condoned, ratified, supported and furthered the sexually and gender-based hostile work environment.”

She is accusing the firm and Iaia of discrimination and retaliation, and she is demanding unspecified damages for “mental and emotional injury, distress, pain and suffering, and injury to her reputation.”

“Sobo & Sobo LLP prides itself on being a family-friendly, diverse and inclusive place to work,” Echevarria said, “where sexual harassment is strictly prohibited. We strongly deny any wrongdoing or liability alleged in the lawsuit.”

Korajkic is represented by Manhattan attorneys Brittany A. Stevens and Katerina Housos.

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