Afiniti CEO Steps Down After Assault Allegations

November 20, 2021

Zia Chishti — an American businessman who served as the CEO of Bermuda-based Afiniti — has stepped down after a former employee alleged that he sexually assaulted her.

The company said, “The Board of Directors of Afiniti, Ltd. announces that Mr. Zia Chishti has stepped down from his role as Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, and Director of Afiniti, effective immediately. The Board will make additional organizational announcements in the coming days.”

This follows after Tatiana Spottiswoode testified before a U.S. congressional committee, with the New York Times reporting, “Tatiana Spottiswoode said that in April 2016, she had begun working for Afiniti, a medical-device technology company founded by Zia Chishti, whom she described as a multimillionaire and a family friend who had known her since she was about 12 years old.

“Ms. Spottiswoode, who was about 23 at the time, said she had signed a contract that included “an arbitration agreement with a strong confidentiality clause.”

“I did not know what that meant at the time,” she said. “I was just excited and relieved to be making $60,000 a year.”

“Mr. Chishti harassed her for months and sent her an email describing a sexual fantasy in which he strangled her and grabbed her buttocks in front of other employees, she said,” according to the NYT.

Then, during a business trip to Brazil, she alleged he “sexually assaulted and beat her, Ms. Spottiswoode testified. When she hired lawyers and accused him of attacking her, she said, he filed for arbitration against her.”

“She later said that she was “appalled” by how she had been treated and that she felt as if no one at the company had wanted to help her.

A spokeswoman for Afiniti, said in a statement that the company had investigated Ms. Spottiswoode’s claims “with independent counsel and concluded that the arbitral decision she references was erroneous” adding that “Zia Chishti strongly disputes all accusations against him.”

You can read the full story here on New York Times.

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