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Real Housewives of New York City star Leah McSweeney has filed a damning new lawsuit against Andy Cohen, Bravo, and NBC in which she claims that producers watched idly as a drunk Luann de Lesseps climbed into a car to buy illegal drugs – while also claiming that producers actively encouraged cast members to drink to oblivion in the name of entertainment.

The bombshell filing comes just days after Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alum Brandi Glanville accused Bravo boss Andy, 55, of sexual harassment, claiming that he invited her to watch him have sex with Below Deck star Kate Chastain, 41.

Fashion designer Leah, 41, filed her own explosive legal letter on Tuesday, in which she alleged producers actively created a ‘rotted’ workplace culture in which they preyed on vulnerable housewives and pressured them to consume alcohol in a sick bid to boost ratings. 

According to the her lawsuit, which has been obtained by DailyMail.com, producers knew Luann, 58, suffered with ‘alcohol use disorder’ – but exploited her anyway. 

A damning new Bravo lawsuit has claimed producers watched a drunk Luann de Lesseps climb into a car to buy illegal drugs

A damning new Bravo lawsuit has claimed producers watched a drunk Luann de Lesseps climb into a car to buy illegal drugs 

Real Housewives of New York alum Leah McSweeney alleged producers of the show actively created a 'rotted' workplace culture

Real Housewives of New York alum Leah McSweeney alleged producers of the show actively created a ‘rotted’ workplace culture 

The suit alleged that producers intentionally weaponized Luann’s illness and even joked to Leah about how they had seen her drunkenly clamber into a vehicle with two unknown men to buy drugs, completely disregarding all safeguarding. 

‘Producers knew that Ms. de Lesseps’ suffered from alcohol use disorder through filming Ms. de Lesseps’ alcohol related arrest, criminal prosecution, parole, and experience in a rehabilitation center,’ the filing reads. 

‘Notwithstanding this knowledge, the Defendant Producers joked to Ms. McSweeney about watching as de Lesseps drunkenly entered into a vehicle with two men that she did not know in effort to obtain illicit substances.’ 

Luann, who has featured in 13 of the show’s first 14 seasons since it premiered, has had a very public journey with sobriety.

She first got sober after she assaulted a police officer in 2017 and was charged with disorderly intoxication and battery of an officer.

In 2022, Luann admitted to her struggles with alcohol after she was kicked out of a gay piano bar.

Alongside a statement of apology, she said: ‘Clearly my struggles with alcohol are real!

‘While I’ve made great strides over the years, there’s been times I’ve fallen. It’s one day at a time! I’m in recover and taking steps to ensure this doesn’t happen again.’

Luann has been vocal about her struggles with alcohol over the years - and has talked about her sobriety

Luann has been vocal about her struggles with alcohol over the years – and has talked about her sobriety 

According to the suit, seen by DailyMail.com, producers knew Luann suffered with alcohol use disorder

According to the suit, seen by DailyMail.com, producers knew Luann suffered with alcohol use disorder 

She added: I’m grateful to my family and my friends for their constant support.’

Leah’s legal letter also alleged that producers knew Sonja Morgan, 60, to be the show’s ‘golden goose’ because she would often get drunk in front of the cameras, and as a result they gave her special treatment – namely being allowed to hide her daughter, Quincy, from the show.

Eventually, however, the suit states that executives grew tired of Sonja’s ‘excessive’ alcohol consumption. 

‘Barrie Bernstein, an executive producer employed by Defendant Shed, told Ms. McSweeney that she tired of cast member Sonja Morgan’s storyline, which involved excessive alcohol consumption, because it was becoming “pathetic,”‘ the filing states.

It was then relayed to Leah that she should be a ‘fun drunk’ and not a ‘mean’ or ‘pathetic’ drunk’, ‘blatantly ignoring Ms. McSweeney’s requests for a reasonable accommodations request, namely for Defendants to respect and not interfere with Ms McSweeney’s sobriety.’

In 2021, Sonja admitted to going ‘off the rails’ in season 12 with her excessive drinking.

During the series, she was singled out during an intervention about her booze habits after she had a screaming altercation with Bershan Shaw that spiraled out of control. 

The spectacle between Sonja and Bershan got so out of hand that they had to be separated by Leah and show producers.

Leah's legal letter alleged that producers saw Sonja Morgan (pictured) as the show's 'golden goose' because she would often get drunk on camera

Leah’s legal letter alleged that producers saw Sonja Morgan (pictured) as the show’s ‘golden goose’ because she would often get drunk on camera 

The lawsuit claims that executives eventually grew tired of Sonja's 'excessive' alcohol consumption and blasted her as 'pathetic'

The lawsuit claims that executives eventually grew tired of Sonja’s ‘excessive’ alcohol consumption and blasted her as ‘pathetic’ 

Sonja eventually quit Real Housewives of New York following season 13, having appeared as a main cast member since 2010. 

DailyMail.com has contacted a rep for Luann and Sonja.

Elsewhere in her lawsuit, Leah also alleged that producers used her worsening mental health in a bid to convince her to relapse from her sobriety.

According to the filing, they implied they would ‘help save her child’ from filming obligations, ‘if Ms. McSweeney consumed alcohol.’ 

A production source has vehemently denied her claims to DailyMail.com, insisting that, ‘Bravo did everything possible to support Leah’s sobriety and her outlandish claims are not going to get her anything.

‘They will not pay her off. They will not pay her anything and the same thing goes with Brandi [Glanville].

‘These are both women who knew that their time with Bravo was up and retaliated because they could not accept it.’

The insider also noted that Brandi has also been accused of sexual assault in the past – referring to accusations made by former Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip cast member Caroline Manzo. 

‘The difference with Brandi is that she two sexual assault cases prior to her filing these false allegations,’ they said.

Leah claimed producers preyed on vulnerable housewives and pressured them to consume alcohol

Leah claimed producers preyed on vulnerable housewives and pressured them to consume alcohol 

She posted a statement addressing her bombshell lawsuit on Instagram, saying she was 'petrified' to speak out

She posted a statement addressing her bombshell lawsuit on Instagram, saying she was ‘petrified’ to speak out 

After she filed the suit, Leah posted a lengthy statement on Instagram.

It read: ‘This is not a story I ever thought I would be telling. In fact, I was petrified to speak on it and was warned not to.

‘Today my attorneys filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court of The Southern District of New York against my former employers.

‘Your favorite Bravo shows are fun by people who create a dangerous work environment, encourage substance abuse to artificially create drama and cynically prey on the vulnerabilities of their employees.

‘Some of the stories and incidents that are detailed in the lawsuit have been shown in edited form on TV or reported in media, but many have not.

‘And there will be much more that comes out once the people involved are questioned under oath.

‘Today I am taking back my reality’.

Leah went on to say that she has been ‘dismissed, stonewalled, and gaslit’ over years as she tried to address her experiences with her employers.

Last week, Brandi Glanville accused Bravo boss Andy Cohen of sexual harassment

Last week, Brandi Glanville accused Bravo boss Andy Cohen of sexual harassment 

Andy acknowledged that his message was 'inappropriate' but said Brandi response made it clear she was 'in on the joke'

Andy acknowledged that his message was ‘inappropriate’ but said Brandi response made it clear she was ‘in on the joke’ 

‘Bravo can try to manipulate my reality and others’ all they want, but the cold hard facts of this care are as real as it gets,’ she concluded.

Leah appeared in seasons 12 and 13 of Real Housewives of New York before going onto appear in the third season of Ultimate Girls Trip. 

Her lawsuit comes just days after Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alum Brandi accused Bravo boss Cohen of sexual harassment, alleging that he sent her an inappropriate video in which he invited her to FaceTime him while he had sex with Kate Chastain.

The letter claimed that an ‘obviously inebriated’ Andy sent Brandi a video of himself in March 2022 in which he said that he wanted to have sex with another Bravo star – later revealed as Kate – before inviting Brandi to watch the act over FaceTime.

Andy last week apologized for the joke which he said was ‘inappropriate’ – but ‘absolutely meant in jest.’ 

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This post first appeared on Daily mail

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