eXp sexual assault suit centers on Glenn Sanford’s green light 

Four female agents accuse firm head of ignoring agent misconduct to further profits

eXp Sexual Assault Complaint Centers CEO Glenn Sanford
eXp World Holdings' Glenn Sanford (eXp World Holdings, Getty)

Four female real estate agents have expanded their claims against eXp Realty’s founder and CEO Glenn Sanford and two of the company’s male agents.

The women — Fabiola Acevedo, Tami Sims, Christiana Lundy and Jane Doe 3 — on Feb. 28 filed a second amended complaint in a California-based lawsuit accusing Sanford of failing to step in when two male agents allegedly drugged and sexually assaulted women during recruitment efforts, Inman first reported. 

The latest complaint describes the behavior of top male recruiters — suspended eXp agent David Golden and former eXp agent Michael Bjorkman — who, at Sanford’s behest, crafted images of success to draw agents into the firm’s revenue share program. 

This behavior included sharing photos of yachts and vacation homes and drugging women to make it seem like they were attracted to them, according to the complaint, which names Sanford, Bjorkman, Golden, eXp World Holdings, eXp Realty and eXp agent Brent Gove as defendants. 

The complaint alleges that because Sanford and Gove earned significant income as a result of the agents’ actions, they and the company allowed Bjorkman and Golden’s conduct “to go unchecked for years simply so they could continue to reap financial benefits.”

The firm, which is facing three lawsuits over similar accusations, denied the allegations in a statement to Inman and pointed to Bjorkman and Golden’s status as independent contractors rather than eXp employees. 

“The claims in this case stem from alleged assaults by independent real estate agents who were never eXp employees — which we handled with speed, seriousness and deep respect as soon as the accusers brought it to our attention,” eXp spokesperson Jennifer Zimmerman wrote. 

She added, “The claims against eXp and its leadership have no basis in fact or law.”

The plaintiffs filed the second amended complaint in response to the judge’s January ruling, in which he said the plaintiffs had “plausibly demonstrated a cover-up” but needed to provide more facts establishing Bjorkman and Golden’s roles as employees, rather than independent contractors. 

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The judge also largely denied the defendants’ motion to dismiss the case, though he agreed to discard some claims that exceeded Nevada’s two-year statute of limitations and another claim about Sanford and eXp. 

Sanford last year was named as one of several defendants accused of violating a federal sex trafficking law when he failed to take action following the assault allegations against team leader Golden and agent Bjorkman.

Unlike previous filings, the latest one details Sanford and eXp’s “considerable control” over Bjorkman and Golden during their involvement in eXp’s revenue share program, described in the complaint as “a multi-level-marketing pyramid scheme which financially rewards the participants for recruitment of new agents, not for selling real estate.”

The complaint alleges Bjorkman and Golden’s recruiting tactics, supported by Sanford and Gove, created an environment where prospective and current agents had to be “in the room where it happens” to find success.

This included Gove recommending that agents “share hotel rooms” and pushing for “attendance at parties where he praises the fact that they have bars stocked with copious amounts of alcohol.”

The complaint also accuses eXp of using non-disclosure agreements to cover up Bjorkman and Golden’s behavior. 

Allegations against eXp and its agents rose to prominence after the New York Times published an investigation into alleged sexual assault and misconduct. 

New York state comptroller Thomas DiNapoli cited the allegations in January while calling for an independent probe into the brokerage. 

— Sheridan Wall

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