Tyra Banks recently crowned a new winner of her “America’s Next Top Model” series, but a former contestant of her popular show just hit the model mogul with a major lawsuit.
According to TMZ, former cycle 14 and cycle 17 contestant Angelea Preston has filed a $3 million lawsuit against Banks and the CW network for allegedly robbing her of the show’s grand prize.
As “Top Model” fans will remember, When Preston appeared on the 17th cycle of the show, the All-Stars cycle, back in 2011, she made it all the way to the final three before being mysteriously disqualified and the finale had to be re-shot before airing.
For years, Preston remained mum about why she was disqualified, and she even said that she had no beef with Banks. However, in September, Preston finally claimed that she was disqualified from the show because she had previously worked as an escort for a year.
Preston claimed that she told a producer about being an escort before the cycle began, but she wasn’t approached about by a casting director until after the finale was shot.
Preston claims that she actually won the All-Star cycle but was secretly stripped of her title and robbed of the grand prize of a $100,000 CoverGirl contract and a spread in Vogue Italia.
In her suit, Preston claims that her time as an escort didn’t break any of the show’s rules and she also claims that she and her fellow contestants were working under harsh conditions, including working 12-hour days.
However, the CW released a statement to The Wrap about the lawsuit and claimed that Preston’s claims are bogus.
“As noted during the broadcast of the ‘America’s Next Top Model’ finale in 2011, information about Angelea was learned after production wrapped on that cycle that led to her disqualification from the competition. We are confident that her lawsuit has no merit.”
Well, we’ll wait to see how this turns out, but considering the money and influence that Banks has, we’re not too confident that Preston will win her case. – nicholas robinson