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Moschino accused of using codeword Serena for black clients

ACCUSATIONS: A former Moschino USA employee says staff referred to black customers as 'Serenas'

MOSCHINO USA is being sued by a former employee who claims it referred to black customers as 'Serenas', a reference to the tennis star.

Shamael Lataillade has filed a claim against the designer clothing brand citing that her supervisor used the codename Serena to alert staff to customers who she assumed could not afford the luxury items because they were not wearing name brands or diamonds.

In the court documents, which have been obtained by TMZ, Lataillade said her former supervisor told staff at the store to keep a close watch on such customers and at times even wrote down their license plates.

According to TMZ, the codename is not explicitly spelled out in the suit but the alleged code appears to be a reference to tennis champion Serena Williams.

As well as keeping a close eye on certain black customers, Lataillade, a black Haitian-American woman, also claims that employees were instructed to tell “Serenas” that a lot of the items they requested were out of stock.

Lataillade has also accused the supervisor of subjecting her to discrimination and mock taunting her about practising voodoo.

The claimant is seeking an unspecified amount of damages from Moschino, which has denied the allegations.

Last year, Moschino came under fire for what some critics deemed as an insensitive marketing campaign.

The Italian brand unveiled “Alien Nation”, a collection which was a response to Trump’s controversial immigration policies.

The campaign, which starred model Gigi Hadid painted in blue, was promoted on Instagram by the creative director Jeremy Scott in a now deleted post, which read: "The only thing illegal about this alien is how good she looks.”

In response to the criticisms, Scott said: “The concept of my ad campaign is to bring attention to the US administration’s harsh stance towards ‘illegal aliens’. I painted the models in my show and this campaign as a way to open a discussion on what exactly an ‘alien’ is – are they orange, blue, yellow, green? Does this matter? They are our friends, neighbors [sic], co workers, relatives and people we love.”

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