The World: New York - Counterclaim filed against ex-Dentsu employee

A legal row has blown up over allegations by the former Dentsu US creative director Steve Biegel that he was pressured into visiting a brothel and engaging in sexual activities on company outings, and that he was sacked after he complained.

Dentsu has issued a counterclaim, accusing him of libel and fraud. In a filing to the US District Court in Manhattan, Biegel claimed Toyo Shigeta, the chief executive of Dentsu Holdings USA, duped him into going to a brothel during a shoot in the Czech Republic in June 2004. Four months later, at a Tokyo bathhouse, he alleges he was instructed to climb naked into a bath with Shigeta. Dentsu claims Biegel's contract was terminated when the company refused to yield to his unreasonable demands. It charges him with making "outrageous allegations" concerning alleged incidents.