A woman who said she worked for Rudy Giuliani during the last two years of the Trump administration alleged in a wide-ranging lawsuit that Giuliani, the former president’s personal attorney, discussed selling presidential pardons and detailed plans to overturn the 2020 election results.
In a 70-page complaint filed in state court in New York on Monday, Noelle Dunphy said that after Giuliani hired her in January 2019 he sexually assaulted and harassed her, refused to pay her wages and often made "sexist, racist, and antisemitic remarks," adding that she had recordings of numerous interactions with him.
Dunphy, who is seeking $10 million in compensatory and punitive damages, said Giuliani had hired her for $1 million a year in addition to expenses and pro bono legal representation for a domestic abuse case against a former partner. But after she was hired, Dunphy alleged, Giuliani kept her employment “secret” and paid her only about $12,000 and reimbursed some of her business expenses, owing her $1,988,000 in unpaid wages. She said she was fired in January 2021.
Giuliani denied the allegations through a spokesperson.
“Mayor Rudy Giuliani unequivically denies the allegations raised by Ms. Dunphy,” Ted Goodman said in a written statement. “Mayor Giuliani’s lifetime of public service speaks for itself and he will pursue all available remedies and counterclaims.”
Dunphy alleged in her suit that Giuliani talked about presidential pardons. She said Giuliani claimed to have “immunity” and told “her that he was selling pardons for $2 million, which he and President Trump would split.” The lawsuit did not suggest any pardons were sold.
Justin Kelton, Dunphy's attorney, said on MSNBC that there is not a recording of the pardon conversation. "We do expect that it will be corroborated in other ways." He noted that the complaint alleges that another person was present for that conversation — who Kelton said was Lev Parnas, a Giuliani associate — and that Dunphy's attorneys would like to speak to Parnas about it.
A spokesperson for former President Donald Trump's 2024 campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the lawsuit.
Hours before he left office in 2021, Trump pardoned 74 people and commuted the sentences of 70 others.
Giuliani, who has denied allegations that he sought a pardon himself, told Dunphy that she could refer pardon-seekers to him, so long as they did not go through “the normal channels” of the Office of the Pardon Attorney because they would be subject to disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act, according to the lawsuit.
Dunphy also alleged that Giuliani provided a glimpse into plans to overturn the election if Trump lost, telling her “that Trump’s team would claim that there was ‘voter fraud’ and that Trump had actually won the election,” the lawsuit says.
Giuliani’s New York law license was suspended in June after a state appeals court ruled that he made “demonstrably false and misleading” statements about voter fraud in the 2020 election. He sought to defend himself against other election-related claims made by an attorney disciplinary committee in Washington, D.C., in December, which said he “weaponized his law license” in a failed election fraud lawsuit in 2020.
Last year, attorneys for Giuliani were informed that he was a target of a criminal probe in Georgia looking into efforts by Trump and his allies to overturn the 2020 election results in the state. The prosecutor in that case has said charging decisions would be revealed this summer.
CORRECTION (May 16, 2023, 12:01 a.m. ET): A previous version of this article misstated the nature of some conversations Dunphy said she had with Giuliani. She alleged that Giuliani said he was selling pardons and discussing plans to overturn the 2020 election but did not say those remarks were recorded.