VIBE magazine named in new suit accusing ‘Diddy’ of sex trafficking

Posted at 2:12 PM, July 5, 2024 and last updated 11:57 AM, July 5, 2024

NEW YORK (Court TV) — The latest lawsuit filed against music mogul Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs not only accuses him of sex trafficking and drugging women but accuses a popular publication of conspiring with him.

Photo of Sean 'Diddy' Combs

FILE – Sean “Diddy” Combs arrives at the LA Premiere of “The Four: Battle For Stardom” at the CBS Radford Studio Center, May 30, 2018, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP, File)

The filing on July 3 marks the tenth lawsuit implicating Combs. On November 16, 2023, Combs’ former girlfriend, Cassie, filed a lawsuit alleging rape and abuse. The lawsuit was settled one day later, but what followed was a slew of other lawsuits from men and women claiming that they had been abused and sex trafficked at the hands of the entertainer.

The newest filing contains accusations from a woman who worked as an actor in the adult film industry in California as a teenager before moving to New York in 2004. While the filing does contain her name, Court TV shields the name of alleged victims of sexual violence wherever possible.

The Plaintiff said that she met Combs in 2004 when she joined her boyfriend, who was attending an audition to be part of a campaign for Combs’ Sean John clothing line.

A woman is seen in a magazine photo

A woman who has filed a lawsuit against Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs says VIBE Magazine never had permission to publish this photo. (Court Filing)

The lawsuit alleges that as a deal to get her boyfriend cast as a model, the plaintiff was told she would need to work at Combs’ “White Parties.” Combs’ parties in both The Hamptons, N.Y., and Miami, Fla., dubbed “White Parties,” were known as lavish events where guests donned only white attire.

According to the lawsuit, when the plaintiff attended the first party, she was given clothing she was told to wear as a uniform. A photo of her wearing the outfit was published in the Nov. 2006 issue of VIBE Magazine. But the plaintiff said she had no knowledge that the photo was taken nor did she give permission for it to be published.

Because she believed the parties to be “a legitimate employment opportunity,” the plaintiff agreed to return to Combs’ parties in the years following. But at  “Around the third ‘White Party,’ Defendants [Tamiko Thomas and Sean Combs] demanded Plaintiff begin engaging in vaginal sexual intercourse with guests, as they had learned about her past in adult entertainment and used it forcefully to coerce Plaintiff into sex work.”

Tamiko Thomas, a named defendant in the lawsuit, is described as a kind of assistant to Combs in the lawsuit.

“Defendant Thomas was to Defendant Combs as Ghislaine Maxwell was to Jeffrey Epstein.”

The lawsuit claims there is evidence of the alleged sex assaults because of hidden cameras inside every room at Combs’ properties in both New York and Florida. The filing says that the videos are either still in Combs’ possession or may have been seized by the FBI when they raided the rapper’s properties in April 2024.

While the alleged behaviors detailed in the lawsuit are similar to others Combs is facing, this filing takes an additional step of alleging RICO crimes by Combs as well as VIBE Magazine and its parent company, Penske Media Corporation (PMC). The plaintiff points to Combs’ longstanding relationship with the publication, dating back to 1993, and argues that the magazine’s “general business partnership and financial support,” as well as marketing and coverage of the “White Parties,” made them party to the alleged actions.

Sean Combs is seen in a perfume ad

Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs is seen in a 2-page ad for ‘UNFORGIVABLE’ cologne. (Court Filing)

“Defendant VIBE, and PMC, intentionally mislabeled Plaintiff as a guest at the ‘White Party’ in its magazine to further conceal the true intentions of the event and Plaintiff’s employment role at the event in an effort to further the goals of the Defendant’s illegal and criminal enterprise.”

The lawsuit notes that the November 2006 issue of VIBE included 18 pages linked to Combs or his businesses, including a cologne called “UNFORGIVABLE.” “The tagline for ‘UNFORGIVABLE’ cologne was ‘Life without passion is UNFORGIVABLE.’ Who knew Defendant Combs’ true passion was being the head of a corrupt organization that abused women and trafficked sex and narcotics.”

Court TV reached out to representatives for Combs, VIBE, and PMC for comment. Combs has previously denied accusations in other lawsuits, calling them “false, offensive and salacious.”