Mario Testino, Bruce Weber fired amid molestation claims

Mario Testino, Bruce Weber fired amid molestation claims

Both of the photographers had vehemently denied the allegations against them, reports Daily Mail.

"I was often made to feel uncomfortable on shoots, asked to massage Mario in front of other assistants, models and fashion editors", Hugo Tillman, who was an assistant for Testino in 1996, said. He recalled attending a casting in Testino's hotel room, where he allegedly greeted the model in a robe. Mr Testino was also accused of making "aggressive advances" towards young assistants.

Sexual misconduct in the modeling industry is unfortunately all-too prevalent, as a recent survey from Models.com noted.

One assistant said he had his trousers pulled down and buttocks fondled while on the job.

One assistant, who wished to remain anonymous, said Testino masturbated on him during a business trip, while another said he was groped on the backside, the paper said.

The accusers claimed they felt pressured into going along with it for fear their careers would be damaged.

Since the 1970s, Weber, 71, has been one of the most important commercial and fine art photographers.

The Times reports that numerous models recounted a similar scenario when talking about Weber: a private "session" where he allegedly requested that the models take off their clothes and participate in "breathing" exercises.

"I remember him putting his fingers in my mouth, and him grabbing my privates", model Robyn Sinclair said of Weber.

"We never had sex or anything, but a lot of things happened - a lot of touching, a lot of molestation". A lot of touching.

Terron Wood, a model who shot several ad campaigns with Weber between 2007 and 2010, said: "The first thing I was told about Bruce was that he puts people in really precarious situations". Weber would go on to book Wood for a Ralph Lauren campaign.

The men said, during the private sessions, Weber asked them to undress and led them through breathing and "energy" exercises.

Ardolf told the Times that Weber photographed him nude and "forced his hand right on my genitals". "I already made it this far'".

Anna Wintour, Conde Nast's artistic director of Conde Nast, said the news was "hard to hear and heartbreaking to confront" and that they would not be working with Weber of Testino for the "foreseeable future". "I believe strongly in the value of remorse and forgiveness, but I take the allegations very seriously, and we at Condé Nast have chose to put our working relationship with both photographers on hold for the foreseeable future". "In light of these allegations, we will not be commissioning any new work with Bruce Weber and Mario Testino for the foreseeable future".

Conde Nast has also announced new rules to protect models from harassment.

"Recreational drugs are not permitted", and any shoot involving nudity, skimpy clothing or sexual poses "must be approved in advance by the subject".