Cast coach Sergio Pena – a former Globo contractor who worked with the station’s main cast, such as Rodrigo Santoro, Giuliana Paes and Deborah Secco – will go on trial Tuesday (9) for sexual harassment against students of the courses he ran between 2013 and 2019.
In January, the Public Prosecution Office filed four complaints against Pena for rape fraud. According to the agency, Sergio Pina used his fame and position in power to abuse victims. According to the indictment, he was going to put at least two women’s hands on his genitals and press on two other buttocks, in addition to trying to kiss some students.
At today’s session, which will take place from 3pm in Rio de Janeiro, 11 women will be heard, all of whom are former students of Pena who have reported experiencing sexual violence during workshops and in meetings he has organized with classes.
According to lawyer Luciana Terra, at least 40 women have denounced Sergio Pina across the country – in addition to the operation in Rio de Janeiro, he is also being investigated in São Paulo and Brasilia. Some of them were minors at the time of the events.
“He is a serial harasser. He has a modus operandi of organizing workshops for young actresses, many of them minors, aiming for an artistic career, weak, none of that was recognized as harassment. Invitations were seized, and they were afraid to report,” the lawyer said Universe.
According to the prosecutor’s complaint also, the casting coach exploited the students’ mental confusion, because “the women had doubts whether this excessive form was his way of being, and therefore, there was no malice in the situation, or if it was a form of sexual abuse.” Thus, on several occasions, lewd acts were seen as acts performed ‘unintentionally’ or without a sexual nature, with the individual able to satisfy his lust through the fraudulent means employed.
“It’s a danger to young actresses”
on the eve of the session, Universe I spoke by phone with two of the victims: Actresses Ramayana Regis and Julia Correa – the first to denounce Pina’s abuse on social media, in December 2020.
There was an atmosphere of tension, from the expectation of “to put an end to this story, to end this episode,” in Julia’s words.
“This is a very painful story and at various times we are silenced, especially denouncing an influential person. But I would like to stop him and force him to leave the job market because he is a threat to any young actress,” Ramayana says. .
Although 11 women will be heard at the hearing claiming to be victims of Sergio Pena, only four of them, who reported facts that occurred after 2018, when the sexual harassment law was enacted, will be heard as victims. Others, who had a history of harassment prior to 2018, will testify.
Sexual harassment is the practice of an obscene act in the presence of someone without their consent. The penalty for this crime is from one to five years in prison.
“state of shock”
Both Julia and Ramayana have just arrived in Rio de Janeiro, in their early twenties, to pursue acting, but end up backing out of plans after what they say they went through with Pina.
“I was building my first projects, opening up interesting paths, but because of what happened, I closed all the doors,” Ramayana recalls. “It was a situation where he and I were on my own and any way I tried to get out of there would be unfavorable for me. Any attempt to impose myself could jeopardize my career. If I said, who would believe me?”
“I spent a few weeks in shock, I don’t know what to do. I cried every night, it consumed me. There came a moment when I said, ‘I don’t want to do anything with art anymore.'” “She couldn’t hear about acting and theater. She gave up her acting career completely.”
Ramayana spent nearly three years away from the stage. Today, at the age of 33, she works with the company Nós do Morro and also works as a music producer.
Julia Correa, the first to denounce Sergio Pina in 2020, I worked with him for a little over a year, as an assistant in some of his workshops. Not only does she claim to have been a victim of sexual violence, but she also claims to have witnessed the same thing happen to other young actresses.
“He said we had to let this touch happen, and that we had to be very free. I saw a lot. I clicked, and he slapped ass. And we felt guilty if we didn’t see it normally. And he took the opportunity. I didn’t know to what extent it was approved or not.”
She says little by little she is starting to realize what was going on. “But it’s very difficult to make a complaint like that. I knew I was putting my career at risk and decided to give up anyway. It didn’t make sense to live in an environment where psychological and sexual abuse was frequent.”
At the time, she was 23 years old. Today, at the age of twenty-nine, he works in marketing. “It’s hard, because I’ve devoted myself to the performing arts for years, but today I’m resisting going back to the stage even to see a play.”
the other side
wanted by Universe, the law firm Francisco Neto, which is defending Sergio Pena, had not responded to requests for an email interview until this report was published. The space is still open.
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