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'Talent' contestant sues Cowell for 'humiliation'

Emma Amelia Pearl Czikai, representing herself, accused "Britain's Got Talent" and its judges of "exploitation, humiliation, degradation and barbarism."
/ Source: Hollywood Reporter

The world's favorite nasty judge Simon Cowell is being sued for 2.5 million pounds ($3.8 million) by a former contestant on "Britain's Got Talent", according to British press reports on Thursday.

Cowell and his TV show are being sued by contestant Emma Amelia Pearl Czikai, who claims she was humiliated and degraded on the show in a broadcast in May 2009.

Czikai first lodged her complaint of unfairness and discrimination with a British employment tribunal in January.

The tribunal action emerged in the press following a pretrial review at the central London tribunal court.

Czikai, representing herself, accused the show and its judges of "exploitation, humiliation, degradation and barbarism."

She also claimed the show was guilty of disability discrimination because it had not made adjustments for her, such as lowering the level of backing music and microphone levels.

Czikai said: "This program makes a select number of rich people very, very rich on the backs of the ordinary man and woman in the street through exploitation, humiliation, degradation and a re-emergence of modern-day barbarism with all its inherent cruelty."

The one-time nurse reportedly told the tribunal she suffers from cervical spine neuritis, which can cause head and shoulder pain, which in turn caused her singing to suffer.

The pretrial review, which will decide if a full hearing will go ahead, was told that she was seeking 300,000 pounds ($458,000) for injured feelings, compensation of 1 million pounds ($1.5 million) and loss of earnings of 1.25 million pounds ($ 1.9 million)

She said if she was awarded any money, it would go to charity.

Czikai had previously lodged a complaint with the British media regulator Ofcom that she was unfairly treated on the show. The complaint was rejected.