In the wake of a shocking conviction on multiple counts of s*xual assault, former fashion mogul Peter Nygard finds himself at the center of a storm of controversy and legal battles. The City of Winnipeg has taken a rare and unprecedented step by revoking Nygard’s key to the city, the highest honor bestowed upon individuals who have made significant contributions to the community.
Nygard, the founder of Nygard International, a once-prominent clothing company established in Winnipeg in 1967, had received the key to the city in 2008 from then-mayor Sam Katz. However, recent events have dramatically altered the narrative surrounding this 82-year-old entrepreneur.
The turning point came on November 12 when a Toronto jury found Nygard guilty of four counts of s*xual assault. The charges stemmed from accusations by five women who alleged they were attacked in the private bedroom suite of Nygard’s downtown Toronto office. Despite the conviction, Nygard was acquitted of one count of s*xual assault and one count of forcible confinement.
This marked a historic moment for Winnipeg, as Mayor Scott Gillingham decided to strip Nygard of the key to the city. St. Norbert-Seine River Coun. Markus Chambers questioned the appropriateness of honoring someone with a criminal conviction of such magnitude, prompting Mayor Gillingham to take action.
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The decision to revoke the key to the city reflects a community grappling with the impact of Nygard’s actions on its reputation and values. Gillingham’s office emphasized that this is the first time the honor has ever been rescinded, underscoring the severity of Nygard’s legal predicament.
But where is Peter Nygard now? As of now, Nygard has been in custody since December 2020, when he was arrested at a Winnipeg residence on charges related to s*xual misconduct in New York. Extradition proceedings loom large, as he faces multiple counts that could lead to legal repercussions in the United States.
This is not the first time Nygard has faced legal troubles. In February 2020, before the criminal charges, 10 women filed a civil class-action lawsuit accusing him of rἀpe at his Bahamas mansion and operating a “s*x trafficking ring.” Despite the allegations, Nygard continued to deny any wrongdoing.
In addition to his legal battles in the United States, Nygard faces charges in Quebec and Manitoba. Scheduled to stand trial in Quebec on one count of s*xual assault and one count of forcible confinement in June 2024, he also has impending court dates in Manitoba, with the next one set for December 8.
The allegations against Nygard have sent shockwaves through the fashion industry and beyond. The fall from grace of a once-respected figure serves as a stark reminder of the importance of accountability, justice, and the impact of criminal actions on the lives of victims.