Jewish Journal

The ‘Jewish hustler’ gets some real green

by Brad A. Greenberg

November 8, 2007 | 11:17 am

Dov Charney is a self-described “Jewish hustler,” and today he hustled some real dough out of the deal that is buying out his clothing company, American Apparel. Mark Lacter, whose LA Biz Observed is my main source of financial news, has the info and reports that AA employees now sign a document stating:

“American Apparel is in the business of designing and manufacturing sexually charged T-shirts and intimate apparel, and uses sexually charged visual and oral communications in its marketing and sales activity.”

Lacter also linked to this New York Times article about Charney:

Mr. Charney has gained a reputation as the Hugh Hefner of retailing, decorating his stores with covers of Penthouse magazine and admitting in interviews to sleeping with employees. In lawsuits filed in 2005, several employees charged him with creating a work environment in which women did not feel safe. They claimed in the lawsuits, for example, that Mr. Charney conducted job interviews in his underwear and gave a vibrator to at least one female worker. Mr. Charney has denied the charges, and judges have dismissed some of the lawsuits against him. In the interview, Mr. Charney said that the media had “exploited American Apparel on certain issues,” adding, “I would never do an interview in my underwear.”

Sure, every know and then an AA ad is innocuous, even cute like that unauthorized billboard of Woody Allen as “der heyliker rebe.” But Charney really has a knack for provocativeness. “I could pull my penis out right now,” he told The Jewish Journal a few years ago, “and I guarantee you no one would be offended.”

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